News Release

August 20, 2010

$5 million federal energy grant was awarded to the Missouri Department Agriculture

Applications Being Accepted Now for Energy Efficiency Grants

The Missouri Department of Agriculture has announced that the state was awarded $5 million to encourage energy efficiency on farms by the U.S. Department of Energy. The Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant funds were awarded to the state Department of Agriculture's Missouri Agricultural Energy Saving Team - A Revolutionary Opportunity (MAESTRO) energy project that will provide livestock farms with funds to reduce fossil fuel emissions, stimulate the state's economy by creating and retaining jobs and provide farmers cost savings in energy expenditures. Applications are being accepted now at mda.mo.gov.

"Many small farms across Missouri have struggled with the costs of energy-saving upgrades. This initiative will not only educate farmers on the benefits of reducing energy use, but will also provide financial support to help them adapt to new technologies," said Director of Agriculture Dr. Jon Hagler. "It is our hope that this small investment for Missouri producers will pay returns for years to come. We are honored that we were chosen to receive this competitive grant funding."

The Missouri Department of Agriculture, in partnership with the University of Missouri, applied for the competitive grant funding in December. The state Department of Agriculture was chosen as one of 25 organizations selected to receive a portion of the $452 million awarded through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. The project will help meet the long term goal of energy independence and leadership on climate change by providing energy efficiency retrofits and will work to educate farmers on cost savings, perform audits to assess the need for added efficiency opportunities and provide financial support to qualifying farm operations.

To apply or to find more information on the energy grant projects, visit mda.mo.gov.