PCC Farmland Trust and Spark Northwest have partnered on a new effort to raise awareness about renewable energy opportunities available to Washington farms, especially those that are conserved.
About PCC Farmland Trust
PCC Farmland Trust is a nonprofit land trust that works to protect and steward threatened farmland in Washington. By removing development potential through permanent conservation easements, PCC Farmland Trust ensures that farmland will forever be available for agricultural use. The Trust also works to keep land in production by making it accessible to future generations of farmers.
Since conserved farms will never be developed, they are a prime candidate for renewable energy infrastructure that will have long-term economic, environmental, and social benefits. PCC Farmland Trust believes conserved farms have great potential to serve as natural climate solutions if provided economically feasible opportunities to do so.
About the partnership
Through this new partnership, PCC Farmland Trust will conduct outreach to farmers who own or lease protected farmland, and assist with connections to service providers who can help evaluate renewable energy opportunities for their farms. Specifically, the partners can help farmers prepare Renewable Energy for America Program grant applications to support the installation of solar arrays and other renewable energy infrastructure. PCC Farmland Trust will also educate staff at partner land trusts on the program to build awareness in the conservation community of this opportunity and its compatibility with permanent agricultural conservation.
For questions or assistance in evaluating your options for renewable energy, reach out to any of the project partners below or attend an upcoming workshop or event.
Who is eligible?
Eligible participants will meet the following criteria:
- To qualify as an agricultural producer: Must receive 50% or more of gross income from agricultural operations.
- To qualify as a rural small business: Must meet industry-specific standards established by the Small Business Association and be located outside metropolitan areas generally considered ineligible for USDA Rural Development programs
Who do I call for assistance?
Depending on your farm’s location, there are a variety of technical service providers who can assist you in evaluating options and developing an application:
- For North Puget Sound: Snohomish Conservation District
- South Puget Sound: Pierce Conservation District, Nicholas Cusick, 253.845.9770 x104, NicholasC@piercecd.org
- Eastern Washington: Spark Northwest Mia Devine, (206) 755-1233, firstname.lastname@example.org
- Questions about farmland conservation: PCC Farmland Trust, Rusty Milholland, (206) 777-1674, email@example.com