Benefits of Agricultural Solar Systems
Net Metering to Offset or Eliminate Electric Bill
Like every business, farms want to reduce their costs and increase their efficiency. Thanks to federal, state and local incentives, solar power is now one of the easiest, and most affordable, ways for them to cut operating expenses and increase their bottom lines.
Tax Credits and Savings
Qualifying farms can apply for several incentive programs to lower the expense of installing a system, including the USDA REAP grant that covers up to 25 percent of solar project costs. Farms can also take tax deductions to cover about 20 percent of these costs.
Applicants may also qualify for additional tax credits, discounts, reimbursements, grants, rebates or special financing. Seal Solar has an in-house team of grant writers to help with applications and financial aid.
Net Metering to Offset or Eliminate Power Bills
Between lighting, machinery, equipment and irrigation systems, farms consume a huge amount of power. With net-metering, farms are only charged for the electricity they use. They can sell any extra energy from their panels back to the utility company for a drastically reduced, or fully eliminated, power bill.
Solar creates cleaner air and cleaner water for farms and their products. It’s a sustainable resource that will never run out.
Agricultural solar systems have a five-year depreciation schedule, which makes them one of the quickest and highest ROI investments a farm can make.
Agricultural Solar Financing
Federal Investment Tax Credit (ITC)
Currently set at 26 percent, the Federal Investment Tax Credit (ITC) is available to commercial solar systems that begin construction in 2021 or 2022.
Modified Accelerated Cost Recovery System (MACRS)
Modified Accelerated Cost Recovery System (MACRS) allows businesses to recover their solar investments through tax deductions within the first year of operation. When combined, the ITC and depreciation can reduce the cost of a commercial solar system by nearly 50 percent
USDA Rural Energy for America Program (REAP)
REAP grants help agricultural producers and rural small businesses cover up to 25 percent of their total solar system costs. Seal Solar’s in-house team of grant writers can assist with the application process and additional funding opportunities.
Agriculture Solar Panel Installation Process
We conduct a feasibility and cost-benefit analysis of the property, including electrical usage, water pumping, irrigation setup, electrical infrastructure and desired level of energy independence.
Our in-house engineers and electricians design a system for the property’s specific needs.
We submit grant proposals to the USDA and other agencies to help secure as much funding as possible.
Once approved, we begin the installation process, which takes anywhere from a few days to a few weeks.
Can solar panels withstand hail and strong winds?
As this video shows, solar panels are capable of withstanding 1-inch hailstones at an impact of 51 mph or straight line wind at 110 mph. If a roof sustains damage in a storm, we can remove and reinstall the panels.
Will solar modules contaminate the soil around them?
No. Research consistently shows if installed modules are sealed leaching of trace metals is not likely to present a significant risk.
Will solar modules heat up or dry out crops underneath them?
Solar panels do not produce residual heat. However, they could shade crops planted beneath them.
SealSolar’s Agricultural Expertise
Take a look at some of our agricultural solar projects!
Eagle Lake Farm
Square Peg Holding Company
FG Smart Farming Company
Tom Jacobs Farm