- Published on Friday, November 15, 2013 00:00
- Press Release
HILO, Hawaii (U.S. Department of Agriculture) â" Chris J. Kanazawa, state director for USDA Rural Development, announced the selection of four businesses in Guam and the CNMI to receive Rural Energy for America or REAP grants totaling $48,335.
âThese awards clearly demonstrate the Obama administrationâs effort to create a clean energy economy,â stated Kanazawa, State Director for Hawaii and the Western Pacific. âThe REAP will enable owners of rural businesses, farms, and ranches to develop renewable energy systems and improve energy efficiency to save thousands of kilowatt hours of energy annually.â
â¢ American Printing Corporation - $24,170
The company will use the grant to purchase a 20 KwH photovoltaic solar, grid interconnected system which will be installed on the roof top of the companyâs commercial building along Chalan San Antonio in Tamuning. American Printing Corporation was incorporated in 1976 and is one of Guamâs oldest and largest printing companies on island. The company, which remains family owned and operated offers a full range of printing and copying services.Â Â APCâs co-owner and manager James Yu, says that âwith the doubling of the cost of power, his familyâs business began looking for ways to control its power bill.â APCâs monthly power bill ranged from $4,000 to $5,000 a month, âitâs a lot of money,â Yu says. âGuam has been our home for over 36 years and knowing we are saving energy while doing our part to save our environment and to make Guam a greener place, is a rewarding feeling.â âBased on the projections of the solar energy systemâs capacity, âAmerican Printing expects its next power bill to be cut in half,â Yu says.
â¢ Green Energy Solutions Inc. - $17,250
Grant funds will be used to purchase a 10KwH photovoltaic solar system that will be mounted on the roof of their office. GESI is a locally owned Guam company established in 2012. The company specializes in packaging affordable solar Photovoltaic and wind turbine power generation systems for homes and small businesses. GESI provides consulting, design, supply and installation and warrants every system installed.Â Â GESIâs founder and President, Mr. Alfred Lam stated, âOn Guam weâre paying so much for the power bill, and I want to do something for Guam to save peopleâs power bills.â Both Lam and his Director and Field Operation Manager Patrick Quintanilla stressed the values of the company and how customers can capitalize on savings through the customizable systems GESI can build. Since the systems are customizable. âBottom line is we want to create solar power systems thatâs affordable, and the people of Guam can enjoy it. Thatâs basically our mission,â Lam concluded.
The system is projected to generate approximately 13,113Kwh per year and save the company over $7,128 annually in electricity costs. âWe will end up Zeroing out on our utility cost! The solar system will also serve a dual purpose by allowing potential customers the opportunity to see firsthand, how the systems look, designed, installed, and more importantly how they produce power,â stated Mr. Lam.
â¢ Automated Energy Systems - $4,282
To purchase a 1.6KwH Photovoltaic Solar System with an iPV dual axis tracking system which machnically adjusts the positioning of the solar panels in the direction of the sun to maximize system efficiency and output. AES is a locally owned company established since 2006. AES provides energy efficient lighting, solar hot water systems and roof insulation services and expanded into solar PV systems in early 2012. Company President Harvey Yu states that, âSolar PV systems are the wave of the future and while the technology is relatively new to the Guam market, it is a tried and true system, that if designed correctly, could supplement oneâs entire power engery needs. Consumers often focus on the cost so we try and refocus their attention to the cost savings,â he says.
â¢ Servino & Associates, Inc. - $2,633
To purchase a 5KwH grid tied Solar PV system which will be used by the firm at itâs office in Saipan. Servino & Associates has been serving the people of the Marianas since 1997 with officeâs in both Saipan and Guam. The companyâs president, Jose Servino, has over 50 years of electrical engineering experience and is also a Certified Energy Manager.Â Â âElectricity costs in Saipan are amonst the higest in the Marianas, and as a small business struggling to make ends meet, any savings we realize can make a world of difference to us,â stated Servino. âUltizing free energy from the sun therefore makes all the sense in the worldâ¦.. sure the intitial costs can be discouraging but the cost savings is well worth the investment in the long run,â concluded Servino.
âWe want to reach out to more businesses an offer a viable alternative for financing both for renewable energy and energy efficiency systems,â stated Joe Diego, area director. âInvestment in these systems can be costly and RD offers eligible businesses with an affordable mechanism to finance these systems, which will ultimately help these businesses, become more sustainable in the face of rising energy costs.â
The Rural Energy for America Program authorized through the Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008, provides assistance to agricultural producers and rural small businesses to complete a variety of projects. Offering both loan guarantees and grants, the REAP program helps eligible applicants install renewable energy systems such as solar panels or anaerobic digesters, make energy efficiency improvements such as installing irrigation pumps or replacing ventilation systems, and conduct energy audits and feasibility studies.
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack noted that the funding announcement is another reminder of the importance of USDA programs for rural America. A comprehensive new Food, Farm and Jobs Bill would further expand the rural economy. He said thatâs just one reason why Congress must get a comprehensive Food, Farm and Jobs Bill done as soon as possible.
President Obamaâs plan for rural America has brought about historic investment and resulted in stronger rural communities. Under the presidentâs leadership, these investments in housing, community facilities, businesses and infrastructure have empowered rural America to continue leading the way â" strengthening Americaâs economy, small towns and rural communities. USDAâs investments in rural communities support the rural way of life that stands as the backbone of our American values.