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Dairy farmers are saving up to $30,000 per year from their energy bill by making simple and effective changes to energy use.

Dairy Australia’s new resource, Saving energy on dairy farms, equips farmers to tackle the rising cost of electricity on-farm as dairy shed energy costs have increased by as much as 89 per cent in some regions over the past decade.

With hot water, milk cooling and milk harvesting accounting for a combined 80% of on-farm energy use, the new resource breaks down how to achieve savings in each of these key areas.

Dairy Australia program manager Alison Kelly said Saving energy on dairy farms is designed for all dairy farmers concerned about rising costs and energy security.

“Electricity is a major but unavoidable cost for dairy farms,” Mrs Kelly said.

“Real opportunities exist for dairy farmers to better control their energy costs and prepare for potential impacts on power supply.”

The booklet provides farmers with a straightforward checklist to reduce their electricity bill by reviewing their dairy shed energy use. Potential questions are also suggested for farmers to ask when seeking a supplier for an independent energy audit or potential energy efficiency upgrades.

Since 2012, 21% of dairy farms have conducted an assessment of their energy. Audits showed forty per cent of farms could save up to $10,000 per year, and five per cent could to save up to $29,000 per year, if all energy efficiency measures were implemented.

South Australian dairy farmer Michael Connor said energy audits are an important step forward for dairy farmers facing rising costs.

“By conducting an energy audit on my farm last year, I was able to better understand the on and off peak energy system in South Australia, meaning I saved money by adjusting my milking and irrigation routine,” Mr Connor said.

Renewable energy use on farm is a major focus of the resource, with alternative energy sources and storage options outlined in detail.

Dairy farmers can access the resources by visiting www.dairyingfortomorrow.com.au/energy or by contacting their local Regional Development Program.

Five things farmers could be doing right now to save energy

  1. Understand their energy use and identify any leaks
  2. Understand the breakdown of costs on their energy bill
  3. Consider opportunities to shift energy use to off peak
  4. Maximise operational efficiencies in their existing dairy system
  5. Consider offsetting remaining energy needs through renewables

See the Saving energy on dairy farms booklet for more: www.dairyingfortomorrow.com.au/energy

Media enquiries: Susan Hunter, Media Relations Manager

0417 540 059 I Susan.Hunter@dairyaustralia.com.au

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