The equipment and energy sources used by producers can play a key role in their ability to maintain necessary production levels and keep costs in check.
Propane can check many of those boxes that are important for farmers. And many farmers are already familiar with propane as an energy source. In fact, according to data from the Propane Education & Research Council, more than 800,000 United States farms use propane in their operation for a wide variety of applications.
Here are three reasons to consider propane-powered irrigation engines:
1. Producers can save big with propane irrigation engines
Irrigation can be an energy consuming operation in agriculture, which can be costly. But it can cost considerably less for producers using propane equipment. In fact, new propane engines typically cost 20 to 40% less than diesel engines for comparable power.
And because propane is a clean fuel, it keeps engines cleaner, too. This can lead to a longer engine life and fewer maintenance issues, which can help producers increase their bottom line. Additionally, PERC’s Propane Farm Incentive Program and other available local incentives can reduce the upfront costs of propane equipment, further enhancing its value proposition.
2. Propane is a clean energy source
Agricultural production can contribute to emissions in a variety of ways. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, greenhouse gas emissions from the agriculture economic sector accounted for approximately 10% of total U.S. greenhouse gas emissions in 2018. That percentage has increased since the ‘90s and as more state and local governments enforce emissions restrictions, producers need to find ways to decrease their carbon footprint.
Propane, because of its clean emissions profile, is one of the most environmentally friendly solutions farmers can adopt in today’s ag industry. Propane reduces greenhouse gas emissions, making it healthier for crops, livestock, and farming families—and for the environment. According to data from PERC, propane irrigation engines reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 20% compared to gasoline engines and 11% compared to diesel engines. Plus, propane-powered irrigation engines meet the EPA’s Clean Air Act Tier 4 emissions standards, all without compromising performance, power, or productivity.
Not to mention, a growing number of consumers are making environmentally conscious decisions and looking to companies to do the same. Many consumers today tend to favor eco-friendly brands and products, so using propane could help producers elevate their operation in the minds of the consumer.
3. Propane engines offer superior performance and efficiency
Irrigation is a vital process to farming and in order to ensure uninterrupted operation throughout the growing season, farmers need consistent, reliable equipment. With propane, producers aren’t affected by electric grid interruptions because propane is portable and operates on an independent system. Equipment downtime can be costly.
Plus, propane offers considerable performance advantages over other energy sources. In fact, propane engines provide 10% more horsepower per unit compared with natural gas. And according to data from PERC, farmers who made the switch from diesel engines to propane engines reported 28% higher performance.
Visit Propane.com/Agriculture to learn more about the benefits of propane irrigation engines.