Thursday, July 9, 2020

USDA loans help rural businesses make energy efficiency improvements

By on December 11, 2019

Provides funding for adoption of renewable energy systems

SAN JUAN — U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Deputy Under Secretary for Rural Development Donald “DJ” LaVoy announced Tuesday that the department is investing $165.4 million to help farmers, agricultural producers and rural-based businesses lower energy cost.

USDA is providing 621 awards to applicants in the 50 states, Western Pacific and Puerto Rico. The funding comes through the Rural Energy for America Program (REAP).

“Businesses grow and create more jobs when their energy costs are lower. Reduced power costs also make American businesses more competitive in world markets,” LaVoy said. “The President and Agriculture Secretary Perdue are committed to making it possible for rural businesses to thrive because when rural America prospers, all America prospers.”

USDA Rural Development State Director Josué E. Rivera indicated the Puerto Rico received funding for four business. Recipients can use REAP funding for energy audits and to install renewably energy systems such as biomass, geothermal, hydropower and solar. The funding can also be used to increase energy efficiency by making improvements to heating, ventilation and cooling systems; insulation and lighting and refrigeration.

For example:

  • Ganaderos Borges Inc. will receive $298,241 to install a Hybrid Wind & Solar System. This Rural Development investment will be used for the purchase and installation of a 156 kilowatt-direct current (kW-DC) solar photovoltaic (PV) system. This project will realize $39,523 per year in savings and replace 231,400 kW of electricity per year (76.54%) which is enough electricity to power 21 homes.
  • Stars Dairy Farm Inc. will receive $48,037 to install a Solar Array System. This Rural Development investment will be used for the purchase and installation of a 63 kW PV System. This project will realize $17,640 per year in savings and replace 84,000 kW of electricity per year (100%); which is enough electricity to power 7 homes.
  • Joavanny Martínez will receive $33,750 to install a Solar Array System. This Rural Development investment will be used for the purchase and installation of a 67.6 kW PV System. This project will realize $20,273 per year in savings and replace 100,010 kW of electricity per year (100%), which is enough electricity to power 9 homes.
  • Carlos Escribano LLC will receive $72,792 to install a Solar Array System. This Rural Development investment will be used for the purchase and installation of a 156 kWDC PV System. This project will realize $39,523 per year in savings and replace 231,400 kW of electricity per year (76.54%) which is enough electricity to power 21 homes.

USDA Rural Development provides loans and grants that help expand economic opportunities and create jobs in rural areas. The assistance supports infrastructure improvements; business development; housing; community facilities such as schools, public safety and health care; and high-speed internet access in rural areas.

For additional information, visit www.rd.usda.gov/pr .

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