CA: San Joaquin Valley Air District approves $4 million in Incentive Funding for Pilot Dairy Feed Mixing Electrification Program

Kevin Abernathy

Kevin Abernathy General Manager – Milk Producers Council

On October 19, the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District (Air District) voted unanimously to pass a new pilot program for dairies, providing $4 million of incentive funding to reduce emissions related to feeding activities. The new Dairy Feed Mixing Electrification Program (Electrification Program) seeks to expand the installation of electric feed mixing equipment and reduce diesel emissions from tractors and other mobile equipment used on Valley dairies. Funding for this program is available in the Air District’s 2017-18 budget.

The approval of this program has been four years in the making, dating back to a demonstration project by MPC dairy farmer Philip Verwey, with close coordination between MPC, Air District staff and other stakeholders.

 

Verwey’s demonstration project on his Hanford dairy replaced diesel tractor-powered feed mixing and delivery equipment with an electric feed mixing station and delivery system. The results were more than impressive following two years of operation. Feed mixing time was reduced from 22 hours per day to less than 6, the quality of the feed mixture was significantly improved and diesel fuel consumption was cut nearly in half. According to the Air District, the project is achieving more than 21 tons of NOx reductions on an annual basis.

The Air District, working together with MPC, technology providers and other stakeholders, seeks to build on this success by incentivizing the conversion of more diesel-powered equipment to electric equipment for feed mixing activities. Through this partnership, dairies can reduce costs and make continued progress to improve Central Valley air quality.

 

The Electrification Program covers up to 75 percent of costs for new projects. Completed applications must be sent to the Air District, with project approval based on total emissions reductions and cost-effectiveness of the plan. If you’ve considered replacing your feed mixing diesel equipment, this pilot program is designed for you.

We encourage our members to take advantage of this opportunity and we look forward to assisting dairy farmers throughout the process. Please contact me at [email protected] if you’re interested or have any questions. More information will be shared in future editions of the MPC Newsletter as additional Electrification Program details are made available.

This report appears in the MPC newsletter dated Oct. 20 and is reproduced with permission.

See video of Verwey’s project: