First ag solar installation within North America.
Valley® Irrigation, a leader in advancing agricultural productivity, allowing growers to produce more with less through engineered irrigation equipment and connected crop management applications, has partnered with Farmers National Company, the nation's leading land and mineral management firm, to complete the company's first ag solar installation within North America. The installation, which is located in south-central Nebraska on a farm managed by Farmers National Company, will provide sustainable power to the landowner by efficiently converting the sun's rays to clean energy.
Solar energy offers numerous benefits for agricultural irrigation, including energy savings, efficiency, reduced environmental impact and potential tax savings through incentive programs. The Ag Solar group within Valley has a large international footprint with more than 700 solar installations worldwide. Valley has now leveraged the expertise of the company's 75 years of experience in providing growers with center pivot irrigation systems and pumping solutions to deliver clean and efficient solar energy to agriculture.
"Valley offers the most durable irrigation structures in the field and our solar experts have implemented hundreds of successful projects globally," says Darin Sothers, Director of Key Accounts, Valley Irrigation. "We're proud to be able to provide growers in North America with engineered solar solutions, particularly by collaborating with our valued and long-term partner Farmers National Company - a company that shares our same sustainability and environmental goals."
"Farmers National Company has always valued conservation efforts as part of our sustainable farm management practices for landowners since our founding in 1929," says Matt Gunderson, Senior Vice President of Strategy, Sales & Marketing, Farmers National Company. "We are proud to partner with Valley Irrigation and the landowner to have the first Valley solar-powered pivot in North America and specifically on one of the farms we manage for a landowner. The opportunity to invest into the farm while the landowner receives additional income from the excess power sold back to the power district makes it a win-win."
The installation is located near Davenport, Nebraska, and will provide solar power to a Valley center pivot by offsetting energy consumption used to irrigate the field. Farmers National Company's landowner client invested in Tier 1 solar panels, which are the highest-quality panels and are also used on major utility-sized installations. They are built to withstand the often-harsh conditions of Nebraska weather, including strong winds and hail. The components/inverters will provide greater than 94% efficiency in converting DC (direct current) energy into AC (alternating current) energy. The pivot size and configuration will produce green renewable energy for the next 25 to 35 years, equaling the lifespan of the pivot. It will also produce recurring revenue for the landowner through a buy/sell agreement with the local utility group.