By Jocelyn Turner
AMHERST – Cow patties, fresh eggs and poop covered pigs are what comes to mind when most people think of a farm but, there is more to farming than what meets the eye.
The Nova Scotia Department of Agriculture will be hosting an information session devoted to helping farmers learn to be energy efficient when gathering their eggs and milking their cows.
“What we’re doing is we’re having Sean Brogan from Efficiency Nova Scotia and myself, a farm energy specialist with the Nova Scotia Department of Agriculture, and we’re giving presentations on different programs that farmers can participate in that help save energy on the farm,” said Julie Bailey, a farm energy specialist with the Nova Scotia Department of Agriculture. “Sean will be talking about specifically the Efficiency Nova Scotia program, like the business energy rebate program, the small business energy solutions program and the custom program.”
Bailey said her presentation would consist of helpful information about other programs that are with the Nova Scotia Department of Agriculture and beyond. She said she will also review and talk about some of the things she had learned going through the efficiency Nova Scotia program.
“I also have five videos that feature Nova Scotia farms that I show and the farmers are talking about the energy improvements they’ve made on their farms.”
Bailey said she and Brogan will be present at the seminar to answer questions from farmers about how they can become more energy efficient on their farms.
“It’s an opportunity for these farmers to learn that these programs exist and to see if it would apply to them,” said Bailey. “I guess the main benefit would be that they should be able to save money on the farm.”
Bailey also said that through the presentations she has made in the past, that the farmers who took the time to take in the presentations and learn about the savings they too could be getting proved to be a success.
“Working with them in the past, we did energy pilots, where we did energy audits on the farm,” she said. “We look at several different farm types and we found, on average, a farm could save 26 per cent on their electrical and heating costs. So it’s really an opportunity for farmers to try and find ways to save energy on their farm and to save money.”
The seminar will take place Wednesday at 7 p.m. at the Oxford Lions Hall. Anyone interested in the presentations is invited to come out and learn about saving money and energy while on the farm.