REAP Project

The MU REAP Project is administrated by faculty from University of Missouri (MU).  On-site energy audits are conducted by professionals from Missouri Enterprise through a subcontract.  Some audits and other field activities are provided by MU faculty and regional extension specialists.

The project is funded by the Rural Energy for America Program (REAP) Energy Audit & Renewable Energy Development Assistance (EA/REDA) Grants, a nationwide United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development program

Investigators from the University of Missouri (MU) were first awarded a REAP Energy Audit Grant in 2015.  A new REAP Energy Audit Grant was awarded to the UM faculty in 2017. The goal of the project is to provide affordable professional energy audits for farms and small businesses across the state of Missouri.  Comprehensive energy audits are a necessary first step towards modifications, acquisition of energy saving equipment, and new management practices that will save money while also reduce energy consumption and associated environmental costs.

Audits will identify various energy saving practices for possible implementation and provide technical and financial information needed for applications to REAP energy grants and loans.

The REAP Program

Rural Energy for America Program, i.e. REAP, helps increase American energy independence by increasing the private sector supply of renewable energy and decreasing the demand for energy through energy efficiency improvements.

The REAP provides guaranteed loan financing and grant funding to agricultural producers and rural small businesses for renewable energy systems or to make energy efficiency improvements. Over time, these investments can also help lower the cost of energy costs for small businesses and agricultural producers.

Energy Audits

REAP energy audits are specifically tailored to the needs of agricultural producers and rural small businesses.

Audits will follow USDA guidelines and will provide a comprehensive report of results and recommendations to both the client and project management team.   An example of such report can be found in the Case study section.  A typical report will provide detailed information on current energy usage, recommendations for potential improvements, estimated implementation costs, resulting savings, the rate of dollars saved per year, and the simple payback period.

The energy audit process will also educate the client about the technical aspects of their operations, including processes and related activities where more efficient energy utilization can be accomplished. The clients will also be introduced to the relevant Best-Practices software/tools/resources used in the development of audit recommendations. Clients will be introduced to various USDA programs designed to provide funding for implementing audit recommendations.

One such program is Renewable Energy Systems and Energy Efficiency Improvement Loans and Grants, which generally requires an energy audit report as part of the qualification.

REAP Loans & Grants

USDA REAP Provides guaranteed loan financing and grant funding to agricultural producers and rural small businesses to purchase or install renewable energy systems or make energy efficiency improvements.

The grants and loans are made on a competitive basis.  Applications are taken year round at the local USDA Rural Development offices.  Loan guarantees can be made on loans up to 75% of the total eligible project costs.  Grants can be made on up to 25% of total eligible costs.  Combined loan and grant funding is limited to 75% of the project cost.  Loan guarantees have a $5000 minimum and a $25 million maximum.  Grants for alternative energy projects have a $2500 minimum and a $500,000 maximum. There is a $250,000 maximum for energy efficiency projects.

REAP grant and loan funds may be used for purchase, installation, and construction of Renewable Energy systems, such as:
  • Biomass
  • Geothermal
  • Hydropower Below 30 Megawatts
  • Hydrogen
  • Small and Large Wind Generation
  • Small and Large Solar Generation
Funds may also be used to purchase, install, and construct energy efficiency improvements, such as:
  • High-efficiency heating
  • Ventilation And Air Conditioning Systems
  • Insulation
  • Lighting
  • Cooling or Refrigeration Units
  • Doors & Windows
  • Electric
  • Solar or Gravity Pumps For Sprinkler Pivot Irrigation Systems
  • Switching From Diesel to Electric Irrigation Motor
  • Replacement of Energy-Inefficient Equipment

The Agricultural Systems Technology (AST) Program at MU

The investigators of the project are faculty members in the Agricultural Systems Technology (AST) program, a prestigious academic program at the University of Missouri.
Meet Our Investigators
Leon Schumacher, Ph.D.
Leon Schumacher, Ph.D.


207 Ag Engineering Building Columbia, MO 65211
Willard Downs, Ph.D.
Willard Downs, Ph.D.


218 Ag Engineering Building Columbia, MO 65211
Jianfeng Zhou, Ph.D.
Jianfeng Zhou, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor

211 Ag Engineering Building Columbia, MO 65211

The Missouri Enterprise

Missouri Enterprise is the sub-contractor of the MU REAP project. Experienced professionals from Missouri Enterprise will conduct field energy audit for your farms and business.
Please Contact for More Details
Bob Beckmann
Bob Beckmann

Project Manager, PE, CEM

Jimmy Story
Jimmy Story

Business Program Manager

United States Department of Agriculture

Nathan Tutt
Nathan Tutt


(573) 876-9321
Matt Moore
Matt Moore

Program Director

(573) 876-9321