The partnership will provide DFA members in DFA’s Mideast area with access to project planning, development, support and discounted pricing for on-farm solar power programs.
David Darr, president of farm services at DFA, said the cooperative was seeing a lot of interest in renewable energy as many farmers are looking for ways to save money, increase self-reliance and operate their farms in more environmentally-friendly ways.
“Through this partnership with Third Sun Solar, we hope to make solar technology more mainstream as the economic and environmental opportunities for farmers are incredibly beneficial,” Darr said.
Panels cheaper and more durable
DFA member Gary Kibler of Kibler Dairy Farm in Warren, Ohio, recently worked with Third Sun Solar to install 480 solar panels at their family farm.
According to Third Sun Solar, the panels will provide 163.2 kilowatts of power, which should mean monthly savings in the thousands for a farm of this size.
In the first year alone, more than $23,000 in avoided electrical payments can be reinvested back into the farm. In turn, this should offset approximately 120 tons of carbon dioxide emissions per year.
Michelle Greenfield, co-founder, Third Sun Solar, said solar panels are far more durable now than 15 or even five years ago.
“With panel prices half of what they used to be, solar is far more attainable for farmers looking to reduce their carbon footprint,” Greenfield said.