Conclusions

Energy costs have varied a great deal in recent years, making budget planning difficult for farmers but the long term tend is increasing energy costs. Even when energy input costs may not comprise a major expense in farm operations, they represent an area for potential cost reductions. Energy conservation now can yield profit benefits in the future. Energy efficiency measures can reduce agricultural energy use by about 25% according to some experts. There can be savings of up to 80% for some measures such as lighting. Energy audits done with and on-line assessment tool or by a qualified energy auditor will help identify the energy efficiency measures that have the best economic benefit and will reduce the capacity needs if replacing with renewable energy technologies in the future.