USDA, DOE Launch Initiative to Help Farmers Reduce Costs with Renewables 


The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and Department of Energy (DOE) have launched an initiative aimed at helping farmers cut costs using underutilized renewable technologies, including smaller-scale wind projects. 

Through the Rural and Agricultural Income & Savings from Renewable Energy (RAISE) initiative, USDA is setting an initial goal of helping 400 individual farmers deploy smaller-scale wind projects using the agency’s Rural Energy for America Program. 

Additionally, DOE announced related funding, including $2.5 million to support the testing, certification and commercialization of distributed technologies including for the agricultural sector, and $1.5 million to support outreach and the identification and development of new business models for farmers to save money and earn income deploying these technologies.

“Today’s announcement furthers the Biden-Harris Administration’s commitment to rebuild our nation’s economy from the middle out and bottom up by increasing income and opportunities for the small and mid-sized farmers that keep rural main streets vibrant,” says Tom Vilsack, USDA secretary.

“By strengthening our longstanding partnership with DOE through the RAISE initiative, USDA is ensuring farmers and hardworking Americans everywhere have the opportunity to save money and earn income from smaller-scale, distributed renewable energy technologies. These investments will create long-lasting economic benefits for their families, businesses and communities for years to come.”

Operating under an existing MOU, USDA and DOE have a joint working group overseeing an action plan for the RAISE initiative. 

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