Harvest Energy Solutions News

    • President, Mark Olinyk testifies in front of the U.S. Senate committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, & Forestry Read Testimony
    • Full committee hearing 09/28/17 – Rural Development and Energy Programs: Perspectives for the 2018 Farm Bill Watch
    • Harvest Energy Solutions Testifies before U.S. Senate Agriculture Committee on Energy Issues in the Farm Bill Read More
    • Talk of the Town chats with Harvest Energy Solutions’ Territory Sales Manager, Ken Zebarah Listen
    • Harvest Energy Solutions installs solar at Bear Creek Organic Farm Read More
    • Harvest Energy Solutions in The Land Read More
    • Harvest Energy Solutions featured in Farmer’s Hotline Read More
    • Harvest Energy Solutions in Farmers Quarterly Read More
    • Harvest Energy Solutions featured in Farmers Advance Read More


Solar Energy Event Provides Insight to Agribusiness Owners in West Michigan

August 3, 2016 – Harvest Energy Solutions, along with Farm Bureau of Allegan County sponsored a Solar Energy in Agriculture lunch ‘n learn event on Tuesday, August 2, 2016. The event was hosted by Gary and Karen Balder, Balder Farms in Hamilton, MI.

Attended by 50 West Michigan farm and business owners; along with incumbent State Representative for the 80th District of House of Representatives, Mary Whiteford; Charles Gould with Michigan State University’s agriculture extension, Michigan Farm Bureau representatives and media guests.

The event provided information and insight into making a conscientious decision on the untapped value of solar energy. Speakers included industry experts in the design, distribution and installation of renewable energy from Harvest Energy Solutions. Area farmers and agribusiness owners also shared their experiences on how they have benefited from their investments solar energy. Attendees were able to get a firsthand look at the roof-mount solar array at the Balder Farm, and watched how the energy from the sun ticked away on the meter.

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Harvest Energy Supports 4-H Renewable Energy Camp with Presentation on Solar Energy

Camp promotes exploration of science, natural resources and renewable energy, build your science skills and meet new people at the 2016 4-H Renewable Energy Camp.

Jackson, Mich.; June 13, 2016 – Harvest Energy Solutions will be showing its support of Michigan State University Extension’s 4-H Renewable Energy Camp by showing the future science, engineer and agriculture youth the value of solar energy on June 29, 2016.

The 4-H Renewable Energy Camp is one example of a 4-H science program where youth research and explore answers to their questions while learning valuable critical thinking, problem-solving and decision-making skills. The Camp is for youth ages 13 to 19 years old who have a passion for science, natural resources and renewable energy, like to brainstorm ideas, research and conduct experiments and, of course, like to have fun and meet fellow young people from around the state.

“Harvest Energy continues to support opportunities to educate the public on the value of solar energy,” said Cathie Hartung, Director of Marketing for Harvest Energy. “This energy camp is especially beneficial in presenting renewable energy opportunities to the next generation of scientists, engineers and agribusiness owners – we’re proud to be a part of this worthwhile program.”


Chateau Chantal to harvest solar power – Stationary array to come online in late summer

Traverse City Record, April 6, 2015

TRAVERSE CITY — Chateau Chantal plans this summer to install the largest solar array at any Michigan winery. The 148.5-kilowatt array will offset about 40 percent of the winery’s power use.

Harvest Energy Solutions, of Jackson, will design the array, manufacture the racks to hold the solar panels and perform the installation.

Chateau Chantal was awarded a Michigan Economic Development Corporation Pure Michigan Business Connect grant that provides matching funds up to $50,000. The grant program requires that recipients address technology gaps with innovative resources or solutions from another Michigan-based company. Chateau Chantal also is seeking a boost from a USDA REAP grant, which could provide up to 25% of the project costs.

Harvest Energy Solutions plans to break ground later this month. The array will begin generating power near Memorial Day.

“We’ve been incredibly lucky to steward this amazing property on Old Mission Peninsula,” a Chateau Chantal release said. “Installing a large scale solar array is one more way we can reflect our commitment to a healthy environment.”

Chateau Chantal said its vineyard has been certified by the Michigan Agriculture Environmental Assurance Program for eight years. It stopped using chemical fertilizers in its vineyard 10 years ago.

It said the stationary solar array will be positioned so natural views will not be affected. The 65-acre vineyard and winery sits atop a ridge 12 miles north of Traverse City on the Old Mission Peninsula.

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Chateau Chantal in Traverse City Installs Solar Array

By MyNorth News Service on April 1, 2015

OLD MISSION PENINSULA, TRAVERSE CITY: Perched high on a ridge overlooking Grand Traverse Bay, Chateau Chantal Winery & Inn will soon offset approximately 40% of their energy needs with a new 148.5 kW solar array by Harvest Energy Solutions. The array’s annual production of 172,351 kW is equivalent to saving CO2 emissions from the electricity use of 18.2 homes for one year.

This is the largest solar install at a Michigan winery. All aspects of the project are based in Michigan, with the winery in Traverse City, and design, install, and racking manufactured by Harvest Energy Solutions out of Jackson. Harvest Energy Solutions expects to break ground near the end of April and throw the switch near Memorial Day of this year. A media invite to the event will be extended closer to the completion date.

Chateau Chantal has been awarded a MEDC Pure Michigan Business Connect grant which provides matching funds up to $50,000 to companies in need of addressing technology gaps with innovative resources or solutions from another Michigan-based company. Further financing may come from a USDA REAP grant that could cover up to 25% of the project costs. Visit their website for full story.

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New solar array will save winery nearly $25K per year!

Harvest Energy Solutions installs largest solar array at Michigan winery.

Chateau Chantal Winery in Grand Traverse County just got more environmentally friendly.The winery added an array of solar panels right out in the vineyard.Chateau Chantal and Harvest Energy Solutions officials report that this is the largest solar array at a Michigan winery.The solar panels will offset approximately 40 percent of the winery and inn’s energy needs, which will save the winery about $25,000 a year.

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U.S. Senator Stabenow Flips Switch on New Solar Array

Chateau Chantal Installs 148.5 kW Solar Array from Harvest Energy Solutions

Jackson, Mich.; June 3, 2015 –U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow flipped the switch to symbolically activate the largest solar agribusiness installation at a winery in Michigan.

Perched high on a ridge overlooking Grand Traverse Bay, Chateau Chantal Winery & Inn will soon offset approximately 40% of their energy needs with a new 148.5 kW solar array by Harvest Energy Solutions. The array’s annual production of 172,351 kW is equivalent to saving CO2 emissions from the electricity use of 18.2 homes for one year.

“We’ve been harvesting grapes on this farm for 29 years and are now excited to diversify by harvesting the sun’s energy with the largest solar array at a Michigan winery,” said Marie-Chantal Dalese, President and CEO at Chateau Chantal.

More than 50 invited guest from the Michigan Department of Agriculture & Rural Development, Michigan Agriculture Environmental Assurance Program, Michigan Economic Development Corporation, Michigan Farm Energy Program, Michigan State University, agribusiness representatives, the Traverse City Chamber of Commerce and Traverse City Tourism presidents, and media, joined the Senator to celebrate the completion and “power up” of the new solar installation.

The array was designed, engineered and installed by Harvest Energy Solutions, a Midwest renewable energy company that specializes in agribusiness and rural residential solar installations. Chateau Chantal’s solar PV system is made almost entirely with parts and equipment made in Michigan, from the Harvest Energy Solutions’ manufactured racking and clips to the Michigan-made solar panels. (View photos).

Felt Estate Fulfills Vision of Founder with Solar Garden

Jackson, MI; December 2, 2015 – It may be cloudy in Michigan in December – but at the Felt Estate in Laketown Township, they are gardening and dreaming of sunny skies.Their partner, Community Green Energy, working with Michigan-based, Harvest Energy Solutions, will design and build a 100 kilowatt solar garden system at the estate beginning December 2015.

Harvest Energy Solutions will design and install the solar garden, located just west of the Felt Estate.Upon completion, the Felt Estate Solar Garden will be fully operational and will generate enough electricity to power Felt Mansion and other estate buildings.

“We understand the importance of this project to the community and are proud to be associated with their goal in creating a sustainable energy resource,” stated Mark Olinyk, President and CEO of Harvest Energy Solutions.

The “power-up” event is planned for Saturday, December 5, 2015 at 12:30 p.m. at the Felt Mansion during Laketown Township’s Winterfest.The public is welcome to attend as we celebrate the start of our solar array.Community Green Energy will be on hand to answer questions about the solar garden and how residents can participate in this unique venture.

Winterfest is a family-fun, free day at the mansion that includes a visit from Santa, horse-drawn wagon rides past our new solar array, self-guided tours of the mansion decorated for the holidays, and a free lunch from Dokk’s Firehouse dogs. No tickets are necessary. The event begins at noon.

The building of the array requires no capital outlay from Laketown Township or the Felt Estate.Instead, Community Green Energy funds the project and sells “subscriptions” to the array.So, residents who cannot have solar on their home site can still participate in this renewable energy source by purchasing a subscription in the project.Subscribers can choose to buy as little as 1 panel or enough to power their own home. Also, for those residents who are interested in solar for their own homes, Community Green Energy also has cost savings options for private homeowners.

“My favorite aspect of the project is that it is true to the history of the estate. Dorr Felt was a man ahead of his time when it came to using wave, wind, and solar energies – so to have a solar garden on the estate is historically appropriate,” said Pat Hoezee Meyer, director of the Felt Estate. The solar garden is also in keeping with the Felt Estate’s LEED-EB Gold certification.

This unique project represents a partnership between two private businesses, a local unit of government, and a non-profit organization. “This is no small feat, and we are very proud to be a part of this cooperative project,” said Meyer. The Felt Estate Solar Garden is anticipated to have a life-span of 40+ years, and is virtually maintenance-free.


Harvest Energy Solutions Was Featured on RFD-TV’s American Farmer

Harvest Energy Solutions was featured on RFD-TV’s American Farmer that aired on December 8, 2015 on RFD-TV.  In this segment, American Farmer educates farmers, ranchers, agribusiness owners and rural homeowners on the opportunities, advantages and untapped value of using solar energy to achieve operational savings and environmental excellence.

“Our company is passionate about improving the lives of hard working Americans dedicating their lives to agriculture and sustaining their business from generation to generation,” said Mark Olinyk, President and CEO of Harvest Energy Solutions.

“From product selection and site assessment to design and installation, Harvest Energy Solutions partners with its customers through the entire process,” said Charlie Cowan, Producer for American Farmer. “We look forward to educating our audiences on the amazing things they’re doing.” View now, or see rerun on December 22 at 8:30 AM on RFD-TV.



Solar ITC officially extended through 2021

It’s official: The U.S. solar industry will not fall off a cliff come 2017. Solar ITC officially extended through 2021.  The U.S. Congress agreed on a bill that extends the solar investment tax credit (ITC) by five additional years, as part of a $1.15 trillion spending bill.

As summarized by research firm IHS, key details of the extension include:

  • The ITC will be extended from Dec. 31, 2016, and instead stepped down from 30% to 10% until 2024. Projects that start construction by 2019 will receive the current 30% ITC, while projects that begin construction in 2020 and 2021 will receive 26% and 22%, respectively. All projects must be completed by 2024 to obtain these elevated ITC rates.
  • For residential photovoltaic (PV) systems, a similar tax credit phase-out applies until December 31, 2021, after which the tax credit scheme ends.

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Solar Jobs Report Released

The Solar Foundation’sState Solar Jobs Census 2015provides current employment, trends, and projected growth in the solar industry. This year’sState Censusis comprised of individual reports for 14 states, an interactive district level map, and thisCompendium, which includes summaries of all states and regions based on the nine U.S. Census Divisions.

This work follows the January 2016 release of theNational Solar Jobs Census 2015. TheNational Censusfound that as of November 2015, the U.S. solar industry employs nearly 209,000 solar workers, representing a growth rate of 20.2% since November 2014, and 123% since The Solar Foundation first started tracking solar workers in 2010. In 2015, the solar industry added workersat a rate nearly 12 times faster than the overall economy, accounting for 1.2% of all jobs created in the U.S. Over the next 12 months, employers expect to see total employment in the solar industry increase by 14.7% – which is 13 times faster than the U.S. workforce as a whole is expected to grow2 – to approximately 240,000 solar workers. Nationally, solar power currently produces approximately 1% of U.S. electricity generation, but that too is expected to increase in coming years.
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