USDA invests in energy projects to aid area farmers, rural small businesses in lowering energy costs

SYRACUSE – The US Department of Agriculture awarded seven grants to Hudson Valley projects to reduce energy costs for farmers and rural small businesses. The grants provide up to 25 percent of the total installed costs of the systems.

The State Director for Rural Development in New York Richard Mayfield said increasing economic development in rural communities is vital to their sustainability.

“It helps to lower their overall total energy costs and that strengthens their ability to increase production, enhance economic vitality, hire more people, which is the goal of economic development that we have as part of rural development for USDA,” Mayfield said.

In Dutchess County, three farms will receive $20,000 each to install solar arrays – Cichetti Barn, Prospect Hill Farmstead, and Rokeby Farm.

In Orange County, R&G Produce will receive $4,000 to upgrade its energy efficiency with a generator.

In Ulster County, Gopal Farm will receive $7,000 to create biodiesel; Karl Family Farms will receive $20,000 to install a solar array; and Uncle B’s Express Laundromat will receive $15,500 to install a solar array.

Other grants are for projects in the counties of Chautauqua, Delaware, Essex, Jefferson, Herkimer, Lewis, Schenectady, and St. Lawrence.

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