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ND Business, Ag Groups to Talk Green Energy Economics

Rural, business and renewable energy groups in North Dakota are helping home and business owners find new ways to save money by saving energy. (iStockphoto)
Rural, business and renewable energy groups in North Dakota are helping home and business owners find new ways to save money by saving energy. (iStockphoto)
March 17, 2016

WEST FARGO, N.D. – As many people are going green for St. Patrick's Day, some North Dakotans will be talking green energy in West Fargo.

The Green Economics conference today will focus on new technologies that will help homes and businesses save money by saving energy.

The North Dakota Association of Rural Electric Cooperatives is among groups that will be on hand to discuss new smart use and conservation methods.

Ryan Taylor, state director of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Rural Development office in North Dakota, is hosting the event. He says while some people have been slow to adopt alternative energy methods such as wind and solar, today's conference will showcase ways to make existing technologies work better.

"Something that we can all agree on and move forward with is the idea of efficiency,” he points out. “Whether you're saving the planet or just want to save money, let's all sit down together and see how we can do that, and use each other's expertise."

Leaders from several energy-efficiency and community groups also will speak at today's event, including representatives with the North Dakota Farmers Union and the state's Alliance for Renewable Energy. The alliance is expected to point out how the state can expand markets for renewable energy.

Speakers also will address ways to make energy use more efficient, specifically in the Midwest, by using new technologies. For instance, Taylor says he's a member of a rural electric cooperative that has a phone app allowing him to track energy use on his ranch.

"We all have a smartphone and we can put an app on it that's telling us exactly how many kilowatts I used yesterday,” he explains. “And I started thinking, 'How can I use that more efficiently and how can I reduce my draw?' "

The Green Economics conference is being held at the Cambria Hotel West Fargo Conference Center.



Brandon Campbell, Public News Service - ND