Dairy is a relatively energy intensive sector. Opportunities exist in the areas of facility design (including lighting), and existing properties and sheds can be retrofit to use energy more efficienctly. Dairy farms tend to use a lot of hot water for cleaning sheds and milking equipment, and the energy needed to heat this water can be provided in part or in full by a solar hot water system, instead of a traditional electric or gas system. Other ways to address efficiency involve focusing on HVAC, refrigeration and irrigation.  

hot water tank
Large hot water tanks which store heated water can be powered through solar systems on the roof of a shed.
NSW Farmers

Energy purchasing is also an important consideration and we have found that most farmers can achieve better terms on their contracts by analysing current usage, looking for group discounts and contacting their retailer. 

Solar energy and effluent/waste to energy technology may provide good return on investment for certain dairy farms. Dairy Australia has done valuable work investigating the feasibility of converting dairy effluent to energy: http://frds.dairyaustralia.com.au/myregions/western-victoria/creating-en...

Cow rear
New thecnologies and methods for unlocking energy from biomass sources, such as cow effluent are making more and more sense as traditional fuel prices continue to rise, and farmers look for new ways to use available waste on farm.
NSW Farmers

Note also that Dairy Australia is providing free energy assessments: http://www.dairyaustralia.com.au/Animal-management/Milking/Free-energy-a...




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