From commercial cannabis and horticulture to food production, research continues to illuminate the benefits of LED lighting in Controlled Environment Agriculture (CEA) facilities. But for many growers considering energy-efficient LEDs in a new facility or a retrofit, cost concerns loom over the choice. Utility rebates and incentives can make a critical difference, but the road can be rocky for growers pursuing rebates on their own.
Fluence, a leading global provider of energy-efficient LED lighting solutions, recently announced its award-winning in-house rebate assistance program has helped growers secure more than $26 million in rebates and incentives since 2017. Rebate and incentive management from the company’s dedicated in-house rebate experts come at no additional cost to all Fluence customers. The benefits of Fluence’s rebate expertise extend to customers through the Fluence partner network as well.
Established relationships with utility companies
The Fluence team’s experience with utility companies across North America helps mitigate the typical challenges arising when pursuing rebates. In addition, the in-house rebate administrators’ long-standing relationships with utility companies ensure that customers always have the latest information on U.S. and Canadian rebate and incentive programs. Plus, the program frees cultivators to do what they do best, without the burden of tracking and applying for complex opportunities themselves. Working with Fluence, customers keep 100% of their rebates to invest directly back into their business.
“I’ve worked in commercial lighting and rebates for more than 17 years and know firsthand how nuanced and time-consuming managing the rebate process and working directly with utilities can be,” said Jason Battles, rebate analyst for Fluence, noting that growers often miss out on rebate and incentive possibilities without help. “That’s where Fluence’s rebate administrators come in. We keep our finger on the pulse of utility companies throughout North America and are 100% dedicated to identifying, submitting and securing the maximum rebate and incentive payments possible on behalf of our partners.”
Pennsylvania Business Energy Efficiency Program recognition
This summer, Fluence’s rebate program was recognized by the Pennsylvania Power & Light (PPL) Business Energy Efficiency Program as the partner project with the highest kilowatt savings. Collectively, Fluence helped three PPL customers receive a total of $2 million in rebate payments tied to their energy efficiency. The growers deployed RAZR, SPYDR 2x and SPYDR 2i fixtures to drive energy costs down and secure rebates from PPL electric utilities.
“Fluence’s ability to work in lockstep with utility partners saved us time and resources, allowing us to focus on the quality of our product and meeting customer demands,” said Josh Malman, vice president of cultivation operations at Jushi Holdings Inc., a vertically integrated, multi-state cannabis company whose Pennsylvania cultivation operations benefited from Fluence’s rebate program. “The savings we were able to claim in 2022 were crucial to helping us manage our capital expenditure, a value-add to the energy cost savings and efficiencies already inherent in using Fluence’s high-powered LED fixtures.”
Potential for reduced CapEx, OpEx and carbon footprint
For indoor and greenhouse growers, supplemental lighting can be a facility’s greatest operational and capital expense. Fluence reports that LED technology — including but not limited to Fluence technology — can reduce energy use by up to 40% compared to legacy lighting technology such as high-pressure sodium (HPS) lighting. With appropriate rebate and incentive management, some growers can secure rebate and incentive payments to cover up to 100% of their equipment costs.
In addition, new Fluence technology such as the recently introduced RAPTR series fixtures provides growers with a true 1:1 retrofit solution for HPS lighting, without the dramatic infrastructure changes and expense the switch to LED lighting required in years past.
“Growing under LED lights is not only more effective for your business’s bottom line, plant quality and yield — it’s more environmentally friendly,” said Ron DeKok, Fluence senior vice president of sales, Americas. “With Fluence LED technology, growers lower their facility’s carbon footprint and recoup costs through rebate and incentive programs for doing so. Fluence will continue to put cutting-edge, environmentally friendly LEDs in the hands of cultivators and help them secure the highest rebate possible at no cost to them.”
Images courtesy of Fluence and Jushi Holdings.