20 PARKS LIVESTOCKS’ USE OF SOLAR PANELS ON HOG BARNS IN VERMILION COUNTY Parks Livestock chose to install a solar array at a hog finishing barn built in 2017 in Vermilion County. Electricity is very important in keeping pigs healthy and comfortable. It powers lights, augers that bring feed to the pigs, and fans that keep the air fresh and at temperatures the pigs prefer. The Parks’ solar array includes 480 solar modules (panels) on one south-facing barn roof. The 170- kilowatt solar array is forecast to generate approximately 100 percent of the anticipated 237,000-kilowatt hours of electricity used by the new barns. Over the course of one year, the electricity produced by the Parks’ solar array is expected to prevent 176 metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions. This is equivalent to:21 •  The amount of carbon sequestered by 208 acres of forests in one year. •  Replacing the burning of 192,975 lbs. of coal per year. •  Taking 37.8 cars off the road each year. •  Switching 5,903 incandescent lamps to LED’s. In addition to the environmental benefits, installation of the solar array is also an economically beneficial decision as it will save the farm on electricity costs. By lowering operating expenses, Parks Livestock can boost their bottom line and use the cost savings to re-invest in other aspects of their farms. Another key benefit is the protection a solar array provides from the risk of increasing electricity prices during the next 30 to 40 years that their solar system will be in operation. This safety will help preserve the long-term viability of the family farm. Parks’ hog finishing barn with new solar panels. REAL WORLD