The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) will be awarding grants for projects to reduce energy costs for farmers, ag producers, as well as rural-based businesses and institutions. A total of $9.3 million will be invested through the Rural Energy for America Program, known as REAP, for renewable energy and energy efficiency projects across the U.S. A total of $241,000 will be invested in California in a total of 15 projects: 14 solar array systems and one upgrade of a refrigeration and heat recovery system. Some of the California recipients include Moonshine Dairy, Lolonis Family Vineyards And Winery, Blueberries Ole!, and Bar 717 Ranch.
Congress appropriated $50 million for REAP grants and loan guarantees in fiscal year 2019 and USDA will be making additional funding announcements for the program in the coming weeks. Recipients of the REAP funding can use it for a variety of needs, such as conducting energy audits and installing renewable energy systems which include biomass, geothermal, hydropower and solar. Funds also can be used to make energy efficiency improvements to heating, ventilation and cooling systems.
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