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Rural Development Celebrates Earth Day at Harmony Nursery
Nebraska Ag Connection - 04/21/2017

USDA Rural Development Nebraska staff and partners celebrated Earth Day 2017 with Harmony Nursery & Daylily Farm, Inc. at the nursery outside of Bradshaw, Nebraska. A plaque was given to the owner of the nursery, Jenni Harrington, recognizing her for her use of Rural Energy for America Program (REAP) funds to utilize solar power. A United States of America flag presentation was held followed by a tour of the nursery. Later a tree from the nursery was planted in the Village of Benedict in the spirit of Earth Day.

"It is a real honor to be here today to see first-hand how USDA Rural Energy for America Program (REAP) dollars have helped the nursery save on energy use," said Nebraska USDA Rural Development Acting State Director Denise Meeks. "The theme for Earth Day 2017 is 'Building Rural Infrastructure'. This is an excellent example of how our REAP program can help a business with renewable energy."

"We at Harmony Nursery feel so fortunate to be part of the USDA's Rural Energy for America Program. The grant award helped us make the move to clean renewable energy and put more of our resources toward growing our rural business. We appreciate the opportunity to be a progressive business owner as we plan for our future," said Harrington.

Harmony Nursery & Daylily Farm, Inc. used $17,794 in REAP dollars, leveraged with $53,384 from Cornerstone Bank-York. The funds purchased and installed a 25kW solar array. There is an expected annual dollar value of generated energy of $3,691 for the business by replacing 42,992 kWh of electricity, enough electricity to power three homes. The generated electricity will allow the nursery to utilize those allocated funds for other day-to-day operations.

For additional information visit: www.rd.usda.gov/programs-services/rural-energy-america-program-renewable-energy-systems-energy-efficiency/ne. Contact Jeff Carpenter, Nebraska Energy Coordinator at 402-437-5554 or jeff.carpenter@ne.usda.gov with your questions.

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