Farm Energy Working Group

Promoting energy efficiency and renewable energy practices to meet the needs of Iowa's small to mid-sized farm operations

Other Links


Practical Farmers of Iowa (PFI) Cooperators Program 
Providing hands-on help to get baseline energy use data from the farm and home, determine the best energy efficiency/conservation measures to implement, and determine renewable energy (from on the farm if possible) to use in the next step.
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Iowa State Extension Farm Energy Conservation & Efficiency Initiative
Provides educational materials on a variety of farm energy topics. View list and download. See especially the topic environment – energy.
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NRCS (Natural Resources Conservation Service) On-farm Energy Initiative
NRCS Iowa offers programs to encourage on-farm energy reduction. One component, Farmstead Improvements, could include improving lighting and other energy efficiency improvements. Go to Practice Code 374, Non-Livestock Practice for specific examples.
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National Sustainable Agriculture Information Service (managed by ATTRA)
Search for products, suppliers and installers for energy efficiency, solar thermal, solar PV, wind and more.
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Women Food and Agriculture
A community of women involved in sustainable agriculture.
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Iowa Solar/Small Wind Energy Trade Association
To find Iowa businesses that install solar technologies.
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Iowa Energy Center
Solar calculator

Wind calculator


Clean Energy Farming: Cutting costs, improving efficiencies, harnessing renewables
Published by Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) program. This material is based upon work supported by the Cooperative State Research, Education, and Extension Service, USDA
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Renewable Energy Options
Renewable energy can be used to displace electricity, water heating or space heating with fossil fuels. Using renewable fuel also reduces greenhouse gas emissions and conserves the use of fossil fuels. These tools will help estimate the energy production from solar photovoltaic panels, solar hot water panels, wind turbines, biogas from anaerobic digesters and biomass such as wood, wood pellets, corn and prairie grass pellets. Before investing in renewable energy production, it is usually more cost effective to invest in energy conserving equipment and processes to reduce your energy demands as much as possible. This has the added benefit of reducing the size and investment cost of renewable energy technologies.
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Other State Programs

The Massachusetts Farm Energy Program is a two year project that will provide assistance to farmers and agribusiness to:

    • increase on-farm energy conservation and efficiency
    • promote alternative and renewable energy strategies for on-farm energy generation
    • reduce agricultural greenhouse gas emissions

Learn more about this project>


Wisconsin's Focus on Energy program for Agriculture
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The Minnesota Project
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Agricultural Utilization Research Institute (UMN)
Includes reports on various renewable energy innovations in Minnesota farming.
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EnergyTrust of Oregon, Inc.
Offers incentives to help farmers introduce wind energy systems on their farms. Small wind turbines are a good renewable energy option for rural homeowners, farmers, ranchers, municipalities and other property owners who are located in windy areas and want to generate power from the wind.
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