Canada’s prairie provinces: Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba, are known for their big, bright, beautiful, blue skies and open prairie landscapes. Now, what most people don’t know, is that these gorgeous skies come with the opportunity to create some of the best solar energy found in Canada.  However, there are still very few consumers using solar energy and taking advantage of the exclusive rebate programs being offered from various municipal, provincial and federal governing bodies here in Canada.

Agricultural solar photovoltaic systems (PV) are an excellent and efficient option for producing renewable energy on the prairies, particularly for those who own vast lands such as farms and/or other agricultural manufacturing businesses. The On-Farm Solar Photovoltaics Program supports agricultural producers by allowing them to reduce their operating costs and carbon emissions, utilizing solar power, an efficient and renewable energy resource, as their main source of energy production. Solar energy is simple and everlasting, it harnesses the sunlight, one of the most abundant resources on this planet, to create clean and efficient energy.

Agricultural solar options apply to residents and/ or business owners who distribute farmed products or engage in eligible activities such as grain drying, seed processing, raising cattle, etc. Residents and/or business owners will need to have an Electrical Distribution Rate Class that is rated as a Farm, or equivalent in order to qualify for additional funding in participating provinces; this information can be obtained from either your electrical bill or by contacting your electricity retailer. Information regarding grants and funding opportunities for solar systems on agricultural land can be found through the energy department of your provincial government.

As solar energy experts, our team at EVOLVsolar would be happy to help you size your solar PV system and determine rebate eligibility.

So what exactly is a “Solar PV” system?

Solar photovoltaic or “solar PV” is a technology that transforms sunlight into electrical energy by means of silicon cells that are used as semiconductors, these can be found inside what most people know and identify as solar panels.  Investing in a solar PV panel enables farms and agricultural manufacturers to decrease their usage of grid energy, lowering the carbon footprint of their operation by exchanging energy from fossil fuel sources with solar energy. These systems can save farmers and agricultural businesses a considerable amount of money in energy costs, variable transmission charges and carbon tax.

A Solar PV investment can offer an extraordinary return of investment, with potential paybacks in under ten years.  Given that solar panels will usually last for at least 30 years, agricultural manufacturers now have a choice: continue paying utility costs for the next 30+ years or pay off your photovoltaic system in ten years or less. Most farmers and agricultural manufactures use their energy returns and reinvest them into their business or just enjoy the extra free cash flow each year.  A solar panel (PV) system can produce up to 100% of the energy needed for your farm operating.

Have a question about installing a solar photovoltaic system onto your farm or agricultural land? Our team at EVOLVsolar would love to assist you in answering any of your inquiries.