Location: Roswell, NM
As a major producer of pecans outside of Roswell, NM, Haley Farms faces rising utility bills because of the energy required to irrigate its land. With the help of a $292,000 REAP grant, Haley Farms was able to successfully install a large photovoltaic solar electric system on almost 3 acres of land that were unsuitable for pecan trees.
The 350 kW system pumps irrigation water throughout the 260-acre farm. The pump runs 23 hours a day during the 8-month pecan season. During the 4-month winter season, the power generated by the system is sold back to the grid. Now, instead of paying $5,000 to $6,000 per month for irrigation electricity, the Haleys are actually generating income from power sales to their utility while the community and country benefit from pollution-free electric power.
Although he had previously considered a solar project, Haley said the up-front costs were too high. Learning about REAP funding was “icing on the cake.” As one of the first to utilize the REAP program in New Mexico, Haley Farms is now a trailblazer in the region. Other farmers use Haley as a resource when pursuing renewable energy projects.