“As the cannabis space becomes more competitive, we see business owners paying a lot more attention to operating costs. Owners proactively seeking ways to enhance efficiency and reduce their overall operating and maintenance costs will be able to stay competitive and thrive. Frankly, those who don’t will find it tough to survive as the market matures,” said Blue Mountain Energy Director Tommis Young. “Our Sierra Fresh Air Systems are powered by natural gas and are an ideal cost-cutting solution for many growers. In fact, we have seen electricity costs reduced by over 80% when compared to conventional HVAC units.”
While energy cost is a major consideration for growers when determining the scale of their operations, energy requirements can determine the allowable size of operations, particularly in regions where local electric grids are at capacity. When the industry was in its infancy, an uptick in electricity blackouts in Colorado and Oregon could be traced to cannabis cultivation facilities, according to the American Public Power Association. To put this into perspective, high-intensity lights and adequate climate control system required for growing a canopy of just four plants in a four square-foot space can use as much electricity as 29 refrigerators. Growers are often taxed for infrastructure upgrades required to accommodate larger operations.
"By utilizing high-efficiency heat pumps powered by natural gas and propane, Sierra Fresh Air Systems can reliably cool heat-intensive lighting and regulate the cultivation environment with multi-zoned or hydronic chiller temperature control without the need for expensive electrical infrastructure upgrades. For operators seeking to maximize yields, this translates into more lights and, therefore, more plants to maximize ROI in larger facility spaces," they conclude.