Treeline Acres Farm in Brainerd Lowering Electricity Costs with Solar Panels
Treeline Acres in Brainerd is adding something new to its property that will help cut costs. Winkelman Solar has installed solar panels that will harness the sun and create energy, which will then be used to generate electricity for use on the farm.
Treeline Acres, owned by Thomas Zimmermann, is a micro farm that has bees, goats, chickens, alpacas, and garden vegetables. To keep a farm like this up and running, it takes a lot of electricity. To help cut costs, they have found a solution in using solar energy.
The idea all started this spring when the Zimmermanns reach out to Winkelman Solar. The family’s goal was and is to produce their own energy by harnessing the sun and making some sustainability improvements.
To get this process up and running, they looked towards an expiring tax credit, and after much thought and consideration, the opportunity was too hard to pass up.
The way a solar panel works and helps the farm is that the sun will strike the glass and penetrate the silicone within its glass. There’s a layer of metal and silicone that will react to the sunlight and help electrons flow in the panel. After that has been completed, the electrons are harvested with wires and sent back into the grid.
As of now, the solar panels will support the Zimmermanns’ house and farm, but they do hope to power more projects in the future. They’re planning to put in greenhouses, grow native plants, and process fibers from their alpacas.
Reducing one’s electric bill is the main goal, but solar panels can also help the environment by reducing carbon emissions from other sources of electricity.
For a homeowner, business, or non-profit interested in cutting down costs themselves, the typical time frame of getting a solar panel process like this up-and-running is 90 days from start to finish.