Infinite Energy and Forest Lodge Orchard have won a national award for designing a renewable electric system for the Mount Pisa cherry orchard. The 2021 Sustainable Energy Association of New Zealand award for Best Grid-connected Renewable System was presented at the Association's conference dinner on Friday, 2 July.
The solar-based system allows cherry grower Mike Casey to charge and operate a large amount of electric orchard machinery such as irrigation pumps, frost fighting fans, plus a number of electric vehicles, including an electric tractor.
The long-term goal is not only to run with no fossil fuels, but actually to run the orchard entirely with zero overall energy costs and drastically bringing down the payback period of capital expenditure.
With the government's goal for New Zealand to be powered by 100% renewable electricity by 2030, innovative solutions will help horticulture transition away from fossil fuels towards a more sustainable and renewable future.
Congratulations to Mike & Rebecca Casey and Euan White at Forest Lodge Orchard! To read more about Forest Lodge Orchard's innovative approach and the electric project, click here.