Clean Air Leaders Top Award Presented to D’Arrigo California
The Monterey Bay Air Resources District honored D’Arrigo California with the Climate Change Advocate Award. John D’Arrigo, President/CEO and Chairman of the Board of D’Arrigo California received the award and stated, “D’Arrigo California will be celebrating its family of companies 100th anniversary next year and I am extremely proud that our dedicated staff of over 2,000 employees have been recognized for their leadership in solar technology, sustainability in drip irrigation and best management farming practices.”
“The Monterey Bay Air Resources District is proud to recognize and honor D’Arrigo California’s ongoing endeavors to maintain and improve air quality in our community. D’Arrigo exhibits extraordinary caring about the environment and shines as an example to other businesses. The D’Arrigo’s are climate change leaders in the agricultural community through their efforts in developing renewable energy production and by sponsoring research in soil science to reduce greenhouse gases. It was a great pleasure to be able to award them the top Clean Air Leaders Climate Change Advocate Award and we look forward to seeing many more accomplishments in environmental excellence from this company,” stated Mr. Richard Stedman, Air Pollution Control Officer for the Monterey Bay Air Resources District.
D’Arrigo California has been generating solar power to operate their business on clean energy since 2016 across two ranches in Salinas, CA and Gonzales, CA. “We are harvesting the sun’s power on 39 acres to produce 5.5 megawatts of electricity from 18,000 solar panels which allows us to run ranch meters and our 152,000 sq. ft. cooling and loading facility located in Monterey County. 87% of our electrical energy needs at this facility are generated by our solar farms. The addition of two tesla batteries allows us to store electricity to keep us off the grid during peak hours. This natural energy is a resource that makes great environmental and economic sense which enables us to reduce energy costs while improving the bottom line,” stated John D’Arrigo.
Dr. Arlene Haffa, Associate Professor at California State University, Monterey Bay – School of Natural Sciences, who nominated D’Arrigo California for the award stated, “D’Arrigo California is a leader in the climate change front because they are taking steps to reduce the climate change impact of their company and are willing to work with scientists to develop and understand new best management practices. They have been a strong leader in the use of drip irrigation. The use of irrigation water requires energy hence the solar farm in Gonzales helps pump water from their wells to their fields. By reducing their water use, they are reducing climate impacts. In addition, they paid to recycle the drip irrigation tape before there were any recycling markets for it. This leadership has helped to generate a pathway for other growers to use the technology as well.”
D’Arrigo California was among the first growers in the Salinas Valley to begin irrigating crops with drip tape to deliver precise amounts of water and fertilizer directly to the roots of the plant. This year D’Arrigo California will have over 17,000 acres of their crops in the Salinas Valley under drip irrigation. The result will be an incredible amount of water and input savings.
Best management farming practices stem from D’Arrigo California’s business and stewardship decisions. They recognize that today’s decisions affect generations to come and they are committed to protect the planet and produce the highest quality crops (conventional and organic) year round in the Andy Boy label.
“HOT” SOLAR FACTS:
Salinas, CA: Ranch 1
- Ranch 1 generates 4.4 MW
- 14,400 solar panels
- 31 acres
- 2 Tesla Batteries to minimize peak usage demand charges
- Solar power will offset the cooling and loading facility costs by 87%
Gonzales, CA: Ranch 7
- Ranch 7 generates 1.1 MW
- 3,600 solar panels
- 8 acres
- Solar power will offset ranch meter costs by 50%
Current Solar Stats
Total Solar Megawatts: 5.5
Total Solar Acres: 39
Total Solar Panels: 18,000
Largest customer-owned net metered solar power project in Monterey County