DAIRYFARMERS could save up to $30,000 a year on their energy bill by making small changes to their usage, according to Dairy Australia.
DA says dairy shed energy costs have risen by as much as 89 per cent in some regions in the past decade, leading them to release a new resource – Saving energy on dairy farms.
Hot water, milk cooling and milk harvesting account for a combined 80pc of on-farm energy use, with the new resource looking to achieve savings in each of these key areas.
Dairy Australia program manager Alison Kelly said it was designed for all dairyfarmers concerned about rising costs and energy security.
“Electricity is a major but unavoidable cost for dairy farms,” Mrs Kelly said.
“Real opportunities exist for dairyfarmers 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, 21pc of dairy farms have conducted an assessment of their energy.
Audits showed 40pc of farms could save up to $10,000 a year, and 5pc could to save up to $29,000 per year, if all energy efficiency measures were implemented.
Mount Compass dairyfarmer Michael Connor said energy audits were 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 SA, 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.
Five things dairyfarmers could do to save energy
- Understand energy use and identify any leaks
- Understand the breakdown of costs on the energy bill
- Consider opportunities to shift energy use to off peak
- Maximise operational efficiencies in their existing dairy system
- Consider offsetting remaining energy needs through renewables
- Details: Access the resources at dairyingfortomorrow.com.au/energy or by contacting DairySA.