Mathias Ag Program provides financial assistance to minimize costs associated with energy efficiency upgrades to farms and businesses in the agriculture sector.
Annapolis (February 4, 2014) — The Maryland Energy Administration (MEA) announced today that the Kathleen A. P. Mathias Agriculture Energy Efficiency Grant (Mathias Ag) Program is now open for applications. The Mathias Ag Program will provide grants to farms and businesses in the agriculture sector to cover 50% of the cost of energy efficiency upgrades at sites that can achieve at least 20% savings in the building or areas improved. Named after the late Kathy Mathias, one of the Eastern Shore’s leading advocates and the wife of Maryland State Senator James N. Mathias, the program is now in its second year.
“Last year’s program demonstrated that an investment in Maryland’s agriculture sector helps our farms and farm businesses save money and energy,” said Abigail Ross Hopper, Director of the Maryland Energy Administration. “This not only helps the State reach its goals of reducing overall energy consumption 15% by 2015, and increasing our renewable energy generation to 20% by 2022, but also helps our agriculture sector stay competitive and innovative.”
Through the Mathias Ag Program, MEA will distribute grants ranging from $25,000 to $200,000 to ease the costs of installing eligible energy efficiency technologies. Examples of eligible farms and businesses in the agriculture sector include dairy, orchard, poultry/egg, greenhouse, vegetable, animal, vineyard, grain dryer, processor, sawmill, and aquaculture. The measures must enable a minimum 20% energy savings in the buildings or areas where they are installed. Awards will cover 50% of the project cost after any other incentives have been applied. Applications must be received by March 15, 2014.
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“My children, Lauren and Trevor, and I are both humbled and honored that Kathy’s life continues to be memorialized through this program,” said Maryland State Senator James N. Mathias, Jr. (D – Lower Eastern Shore) and Kathy’s husband. “Kathy was fully dedicated to the people and lifestyle of the Eastern Shore and very fond of our rural and farming communities. Even through her most difficult challenges, Kathy continued to renew her boundless energy and positive attitude which exemplifies this program. The MEA has continued to help farmers use best practices to promote energy efficiency while saving money.”
The mission of the Maryland Energy Administration (MEA) is to promote affordable, reliable, clean energy. MEA’s programs and policies help lower energy bills, fuel the creation of green collar jobs, address environmental and climate impacts, and promote energy independence.