Curtimade Dairy, Tulare a family run dairy operation with 6,000 head of dairy cattle, has always taken a long-term view in investing in the Dairy. For the past 99 years, they have been running a first-class self-sufficient operation. With the drop in milk prices and rise in operating costs, a solar power system was the right solution to provide stability and energy security for the Dairy today and for generations to come.
A ground mounted SPG Solar, Inc., Novato solar tracking system, covering roughly four-acres, powers 85% of Curtimade Dairy's electricity needs and will provide an expected annual savings of $145,000. The solar installation not only cuts down on their daily operating costs but provides a long-term hedge against rising electricity costs and a strategy towards sustainable production and quality of milk.
Solar is ideal for dairies since summer is when the dairies need the most energy for increased water needs and cooling techniques for the cows. The solar power system can automatically set these peak demands. The solar power system produces over 1,420,000 kilowatt hours (kWh) annually, providing energy during peak hours of the day, when electricity loads and prices are at the highest.
And the new system provides environmental benefits:
• Produces enough electricity to power 130 average American homes year after year
• Reduces greenhouse gases by 27,000 tons over the 25 year warranted life of the solar panels
• Equivalent to removing 192 cars from our congested highways yearly
"This installation provides our dairy with predictable power pricing and stability against rising electricity costs. The state rebates, federal tax incentives and SPG Solar's experience with building high-performance tracking systems which produce more power, strengthened the business case for solar." Says Ben Curti Owner, Curtimade Dairy.