Agricultural producers in Colorado who are interested in identifying ways to conserve energy on their farm, or who want to implement conservation practices recommended in an energy audit such as irrigation water management, lighting system improvements, or residue and tillage management are encouraged to apply for the second round of 2016 funding available thru USDA's Natural Resources Conservation Service's (NRCS) on-farm energy initiative. Applications MUST be received by Friday, July 15, 2016.
The NRCS on-farm energy initiative provides eligible landowners technical information and financial assistance that identifies how energy can be used more efficiently to reduce input costs, increases productivity per unit of energy consumed by equipment and lighting, and reduces air pollutants and greenhouse gas emissions caused when energy is generated for agricultural use.
Financial assistance is available for site-specific energy analysis of eligible farmsteads and irrigation systems known as an Agricultural Energy Management Plan, or AgEMP which are completed by NRCS-certified Technical Service Providers. NRCS AgEMP meets industry-standards and clearly shows itemized energy use by individual systems to establish a baseline for electricity and other fuel improvements, recommendations for equipment improvements and upgrades, amount of potential energy reductions and financial savings for each recommendation, cost estimates of potential improvements, as well as length of expected payback for energy efficiency upgrades.
With a completed AgEMP or other qualifying energy audit, eligible producers can apply for Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) assistance for the purchase and installation of improvements. Eligible applicants include individuals, legal entities, Indian Tribes or joint operations engaged in agricultural production.
Interested landowners MUST apply by Friday, July 15, 2016. To enroll or for additional information about NRCS' on-farm energy initiative, please contact your local NRCS field office located within the USDA service center that services your county or you may also visit http://www.nrcs.usda.gov/wps/portal/nrcs/main/co/contact/local.