SPEARFISH, S.D. (AP) — A golf course in western South Dakota has added more than 230 solar panels to offset the energy use of an irrigation system.

The panels were installed over 10 days along the north side of the irrigation pond at the Elkhorn Ridge Golf Club and Resort's 18th hole. They're expected to cut the electrical bills for the course by more than $13,000 a year, the Black Hills Pioneer reported.

"They currently provide power to the pumps for the irrigation system and the well we use to fill the pond," said course superintendent Greg Brandriet. "The system will generate a yearly average of 120 MWh (megawatts per hour), around 43 percent of our annual usage for the irrigation system."

The system would produce an excess of electricity during the winter months when that energy would be returned to the grid. The system would provide as little as 25 percent in the peak usage months of July and August.

"In the world of golf, there is a growing movement to become more sustainable and enhance the many benefits golf has for the environment," Brandriet said. "This system highlights the forefront of this national movement into alternative energy and environmental stewardship and also strengthens our dedication to the local community."

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