EmPower Earth | Changing Lives With Solar

Summer Heat Wave

Credit due to: renewableenergyaccess.com

rn

by rn Stewart Truelsen

October 2, 2006

Triple-digit temperatures and record weekly electricity use grabbed rn headlines from gasoline prices for a short while over the summer. rn Demand in turn led to record-high natural gas prices, as this is used rn to generate around 18 percent of the nation”s electricity.

Development of solar energy has important implications for agriculture rn and rural America. Farms and ranches are going to be bigger users rn of solar energy in the future, and solar farms or large-scale solar rn generating stations could dot the rural landscape, at least in the rn West and Southwest.
Farmers rely both on electricity and natural gas in the production, rn processing and storage of commodities so they get a double-whammy rn when these prices rise.

In California, Farm Bureau members participated in a voluntary state-wide rn program to reduce energy consumption any time a power emergency was rn declared. Conservation and efficiency help, but the blazing sun itself rn is a potential remedy for rolling blackouts and rising energy prices.

According to the PopSci 2025, a strategy prepared by Popular Science rn magazine with the help of dozens of scientists and energy experts, rn solar power can supply 10 percent of the nation”s electricity needs rn by 2025. Wind, solar and biomass together produce only 3 percent of rn electricity today so that would be a big jump, and beyond 2025 it rn is envisioned that solar could grab an even greater share of the market.

Development of solar energy has important implications for agriculture rn and rural America. Farms and ranches are going to be bigger users rn of solar energy in the future, and solar farms or large-scale solar rn generating stations could dot the rural landscape, at least in the rn West and Southwest.

Not only are farms and ranches going to use more solar energy, but rn they are going to use it for bigger jobs. P-R Farms in the San Joaquin rn Valley of California installed nearly 8,000 solar panels on the roof rn of a large packinghouse to provide it with electricity. The tree fruit rn and almond operation is owned by Pat Ricchiuti, president of the Fresno rn County Farm Bureau. Fetzer Vineyards is installing a solar system rn at its Mendocino County wine bottling facility and barrel room.

Small-scale solar applications in agriculture include providing electricity rn for lighting, pumping water, battery charging and electric fences. rn Solar water-heating and space heating systems are widely available rn to everyone.

Solar energy is generally equated with photovoltaic technology which rn uses solar cells and panels to convert sunlight directly to electricity, rn but there are other technologies that are more efficient and capable rn of power plant size projects.

Concentrating solar power technology produces high temperature heat rn which is converted into electricity. A 500-megawatt solar generating rn station planned by Southern California Edison for the desert northeast rn of Los Angeles will use large mirrored dishes arrayed over thousands rn of acres to reflect enough sunlight to serve almost 300,000 customers.

An Australian company is planning to build a giant solar tower in rn the outback of Australia. The tower will look like a tall chimney rn surrounded by a vast, open-sided greenhouse or solar collector. Hot rn air under the canopy is drawn up the tower and the rushing wind causes rn turbines to spin and generate electricity.
Solar power is another clean, renewable energy that has applications rn for agriculture and could bring jobs and development to rural America.

rn

About the author…
Stewart Truelsen is a regular contributor to the American Farm Bureau rn Federation”s (AFBF) weekly Focus on Agriculture series. Stewart Truelsen rn was director of broadcast services for the American Farm Bureau Federation rn until his retirement in 2005. He joined the AFBF public relations rn team in 1977. He continues as a consultant and freelance writer and rn contributes regularly to the Focus on Agriculture commentary. Prior rn to joining AFBF, Truelsen was editor of the Paul Harvey Show for ABC rn Radio in Chicago. He received his B.A. degree in journalism from the rn University of Iowa.
The information and views expressed in this article are those of the rn author and not necessarily those of RenewableEnergyAccess.com or the rn companies that advertise on its Web site and other publications.

rn

Credit due to: renewableenergyaccess.com

Credit due to: renewableenergyaccess.com

rn

by rn Stewart Truelsen

October 2, 2006

Triple-digit temperatures and record weekly electricity use grabbed rn headlines from gasoline prices for a short while over the summer. rn Demand in turn led to record-high natural gas prices, as this is used rn to generate around 18 percent of the nation”s electricity.

Development of solar energy has important implications for agriculture rn and rural America. Farms and ranches are going to be bigger users rn of solar energy in the future, and solar farms or large-scale solar rn generating stations could dot the rural landscape, at least in the rn West and Southwest.
Farmers rely both on electricity and natural gas in the production, rn processing and storage of commodities so they get a double-whammy rn when these prices rise.

In California, Farm Bureau members participated in a voluntary state-wide rn program to reduce energy consumption any time a power emergency was rn declared. Conservation and efficiency help, but the blazing sun itself rn is a potential remedy for rolling blackouts and rising energy prices.

According to the PopSci 2025, a strategy prepared by Popular Science rn magazine with the help of dozens of scientists and energy experts, rn solar power can supply 10 percent of the nation”s electricity needs rn by 2025. Wind, solar and biomass together produce only 3 percent of rn electricity today so that would be a big jump, and beyond 2025 it rn is envisioned that solar could grab an even greater share of the market.

Development of solar energy has important implications for agriculture rn and rural America. Farms and ranches are going to be bigger users rn of solar energy in the future, and solar farms or large-scale solar rn generating stations could dot the rural landscape, at least in the rn West and Southwest.

Not only are farms and ranches going to use more solar energy, but rn they are going to use it for bigger jobs. P-R Farms in the San Joaquin rn Valley of California installed nearly 8,000 solar panels on the roof rn of a large packinghouse to provide it with electricity. The tree fruit rn and almond operation is owned by Pat Ricchiuti, president of the Fresno rn County Farm Bureau. Fetzer Vineyards is installing a solar system rn at its Mendocino County wine bottling facility and barrel room.

Small-scale solar applications in agriculture include providing electricity rn for lighting, pumping water, battery charging and electric fences. rn Solar water-heating and space heating systems are widely available rn to everyone.

Solar energy is generally equated with photovoltaic technology which rn uses solar cells and panels to convert sunlight directly to electricity, rn but there are other technologies that are more efficient and capable rn of power plant size projects.

Concentrating solar power technology produces high temperature heat rn which is converted into electricity. A 500-megawatt solar generating rn station planned by Southern California Edison for the desert northeast rn of Los Angeles will use large mirrored dishes arrayed over thousands rn of acres to reflect enough sunlight to serve almost 300,000 customers.

An Australian company is planning to build a giant solar tower in rn the outback of Australia. The tower will look like a tall chimney rn surrounded by a vast, open-sided greenhouse or solar collector. Hot rn air under the canopy is drawn up the tower and the rushing wind causes rn turbines to spin and generate electricity.
Solar power is another clean, renewable energy that has applications rn for agriculture and could bring jobs and development to rural America.

rn

About the author…
Stewart Truelsen is a regular contributor to the American Farm Bureau rn Federation”s (AFBF) weekly Focus on Agriculture series. Stewart Truelsen rn was director of broadcast services for the American Farm Bureau Federation rn until his retirement in 2005. He joined the AFBF public relations rn team in 1977. He continues as a consultant and freelance writer and rn contributes regularly to the Focus on Agriculture commentary. Prior rn to joining AFBF, Truelsen was editor of the Paul Harvey Show for ABC rn Radio in Chicago. He received his B.A. degree in journalism from the rn University of Iowa.
The information and views expressed in this article are those of the rn author and not necessarily those of RenewableEnergyAccess.com or the rn companies that advertise on its Web site and other publications.

rn

Credit due to: renewableenergyaccess.com

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