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Farms, rural businesses to receive energy grantsFarms, rural businesses to receive energy grants

Some are investing in wind and solar projects.

July 19, 2016

2 Min Read

Twenty-eight projects in Minnesota will receive a total of $395,350 in funding through the Rural Energy for America Program to make energy efficiency improvements or to install renewable energy systems.

Colleen Landkamer, USDA Rural Development state director, said the funding will help rural small businesses and agricultural producers reduce energy usage and costs in their operations.

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Ardolf Enterprises Inc., a certified cleaning agency in Faribault, has been selected to receive a $10,912 REAP grant to purchase and install a 14.625 kW photovoltaic solar array. The system is expected to replace all electrical usage – generating more than 16,000 kWh of energy – and will save the business more than $2,000 per year.

Staple Food Corp, a family-owned grocery store providing full-service goods including fresh produce, meats, and cheese, is receiving a $19,693 REAP grant to replace its fluorescent lighting system with a LED system. Multi-deck open refrigeration cases will also be replaced with enclosed, energy efficient cases. The new system is expected to save the Staples business $10,123 annually and reduce energy usage by 218,734 kWh annually. That is enough energy to power more than 21 homes.

Other recipients and their grant amounts include:

AJs Gas And Grocery Inc., Herman, $9,139, energy efficiency

American Prairie Inc., Albert Lea, $10,795, solar

Clifford Armbrust, Trimont, $7,512, energy efficiency

Brey Farms Inc., New Ulm, $3,723, energy efficiency

Clearwater-Polk Electric Co-Op Inc., Bagley, $19,701, energy efficiency

Cohrs Energy, LLC, Glencoe, $19,975, wind

Chad Crowley, La Crescent, $10,438, solar

Jerome Edling, Clear Lake, $19,750, solar

Gaillen Guadalupe Dba Mini Market Lupita, Worthington, $20,000, energy efficiency

Gazette Publishing, Inc., Wheaton, $3,581, energy efficiency

Heers Family Farm, Owantonna, $20,000, solar

Todd Heieie, Brooten, $4,415, energy efficiency

James Jorgenson, Westbrook, $17,320, solar

Maria Kreidermacher, Altura, $20,000, solar

Victor Legatt, St. Joseph, $13,895, biomass

Loren and Renae Pederson, Johnson, $18,464, solar

Dean Mace, Detroit Lakes, $2,257, energy efficiency

Molitor Brothers Farm, Cannon Falls, $20,000, solar

Newrich Foods, Inc., New Richland, $8,656, energy efficiency

Ron Olson, Cologne, $20,000, solar

Dale Prokosch, Bird Island, $13,704, energy efficiency

Sells Farms Ltd, Beaver Creek, $8,847, geothermal

Gale Symens, Heron Lake, $20,000, wind

Tapp Farms, Dexter, $20,000, solar

Arthur Thicke, La Crescent, $20,000, solar

Viking Electric, Inc., Spring Grove, $12,573, solar

USDA is providing $43.2 million in loan guarantees and $11.6 million in grants through REAP for projects in every state, as well as in the Virgin Islands, the Western Pacific and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico.

Since 2009, REAP has helped finance more than 1,000 renewable energy and energy efficiency projects throughout Minnesota. During this period, USDA has provided more than $40 million in grants and loan guarantees to agricultural producers and rural small business owners.

Congress created the REAP program in the 2002 Farm Bill.

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