Farmers Key to Renewable Energy Future

California is progressing toward its goal of achieving 100% renewable and carbon-neutral electricity by 2045, and agriculture may be an integral part of the solution.

Farmers statewide have invested in renewable-energy technologies near vineyards, row-crop farms and atop walnut dryers. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, 8% of California farms have an on-site renewable-energy system.

Aaron Barcellos, who farms row crops and trees in Merced and Fresno counties, took advantage of federal tax incentives and invested in constructing two solar systems that total 1.4 megawatts to offset the farm’s energy usage.