Hilbert Farm Expands Renewable Energy System

Solar electric system to help dairy farmer reduce fossil fuel consumption, lower energy bills and protect the environment

HILBERT, Wis. (November 17, 2004) - Kenneth Buelow of Holsum Dairy increased the generator capacity of the bioenergy anaerobic digester on his farm to cut energy consumption, gain energy independence and save money on his energy costs. The system upgrade is expected to generate 1.6 million kilowatt hours (kWh) of electricity and 109,430 therms of energy each year - enough to prevent 2,561 tons of the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide from entering the atmosphere each year. Holsum Dairy initially installed its agricultural bioenergy facility in early 2002.

"As electricity prices continue to rise and the costs of renewable energy systems fall, a growing number of Wisconsin's large farms are implementing anaerobic digestion - manure-to- energy renewable energy systems - to reduce their utility bills and improve the environmental performance on the farm," said Don Wichert, program director for Focus on Energy's Renewable Energy program. "Focus on Energy has a network of experts across the state and offers a variety of programs to help anyone plan, finance and install renewable energy systems."

Holsum Dairy was able to expand their system with the help of a $55,000 implementation grant from Wisconsin's Focus on Energy Renewable Energy program. By supporting Wisconsin's renewable energy marketplace, Focus on Energy's Renewable Energy program has made the sun, wind, water and organic materials a bigger part of Wisconsin's energy mix and has helped ensure that Wisconsin's residents and businesses have reliable and affordable sources of energy. Interest in renewable energy systems is growing rapidly. Between April 2002 and September 2004, 215 renewable energy projects have been completed with the assistance of the Renewable Energy program, awarding users over $1,452,390 and reducing energy consumption by more than 4,078,786 kWh and 26,952 therms.

For more information about Renewable Energy programs, call Focus on Energy at 800-762-7077 or visit www.focusonenergy.com.

About the Focus on Energy Renewable Energy Program
Focus on Energy is a public-private partnership that provides energy efficiency and renewable energy information and services to the state's energy utility customers. Focus on Energy's Renewable Energy program seeks to raise awareness, provide training and financing, enhance marketing, promote technical assistance and support the installation of renewable energy technologies across Wisconsin.

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