In the spring of 2020, a 70kW photovoltaic system was installed at Headwaters Farm. This project has had an immediate impact on EMSWCD’s carbon footprint and illustrates the organization’s commitment to clean air and mitigating climate change. The two solar arrays are anticipated to offset all of the farm’s electricity usage, and any extra electricity produced will be credited to local families struggling to pay their power bills. Given current usage, it is anticipated that the system will pay for itself within 16 years, well within the warranty of the panels!
EMSWCD’s investment in solar power leverages other environmental infrastructure investments made at Headwaters. These include a riparian buffer around the North Fork of Johnson Creek, fish passage improvements, extensive pollinator habitat, and many efforts to foster heathy soils. Taken together, these improvements and features tell a powerful story of how agriculture can be a positive force for protecting and enhancing our natural environment.
Headwaters solar monitoring by Enphase Energy
You can track our solar power output at Enphase Energy’s Headwaters monitoring page!
More importantly, the commitment to solar helps reduce EMSWCD’s overall carbon footprint and mitigate climate change. Within four months of operation, the Headwaters Farm solar system produced the carbon-offset equivalency of saving over 700 trees! The addition of renewable energy at Headwaters Farm is also spurring other carbon-free investments, like an electric utility vehicle and the installation of a car charger to recharge EMSWCD’s electric vehicles.
EMSWCD is excited to be sharing our “solar story” in hopes that other farms, businesses and residents will incorporate renewable energy into their homes and workplaces.
Watch time-lapse videos of the solar panels being installed on the equipment shed and the barn!
This project was made possible with support from the PGE Renewable Development Fund (RDF). Since 1999, customers of Portland General Electric have supported clean energy by participating in the Green Future renewable power program (more information about PGE’s RDF can be found at portlandgeneral.com/rdf). We greatly appreciate Green Futures customers!