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Success Story

Criss Family Farms, Bonanza

Estimated annual savings: $5,900

Irrigation system improvements have lightened the load at the Criss family farm near Klamath Falls—reducing energy, water and labor needed to grow 2,000 acres of alfalfa and grain.

Before the upgrade, the farm relied on traditional wheel lines, which had to be moved both morning and night. According to Chad Criss, who runs the farm with his wife and brother, it took nine days and a lot of labor just to irrigate one field. Criss researched options, decided on a pivot irrigation system and contacted Energy Trust to find out about cash incentives. That call opened the door to a bigger project that provided more benefits than he imagined.

“In addition to the pivot system, we removed our 70-horsepower pump and installed a 50-horsepower pump with a variable frequency drive,” said Criss. “The variable frequency drive runs everything more efficiently, reducing energy costs.”

The Criss farm received $21,000 in Energy Trust cash incentives and expects to cut annual energy costs by an estimated $5,900. Plus, the new system uses water more efficiently and could save the farm more than 24 million gallons of water every year.