John D’Arrigo (from left), president, CEO, and chairman of the board of D’Arrigo California, and his wife, Sandy D’Arrigo, Andy D’Arrigo, chairman emeritus and Claudia Pizarro-Villalobos, director of marketing and culinary. ( Courtesy D'Arrigo )

D’Arrigo Bros. Co. of California, Salinas, has received the Climate Change Advocate Award, recognizing the company for projects including solar power and water-saving techniques.

President, CEO and board chairman John D’Arrigo accepted the award from the Monterey Bay Air Resources District, according to a news release.

“D’Arrigo exhibits extraordinary caring about the environment and shines as an example to other businesses,” Richard Stedman, air pollution control officer for the Monterey Bay Air Resources District, said in the release. “The D’Arrigo’s are climate change leaders in the agricultural community through their efforts in developing renewable energy production and by sponsoring research in soil science to reduce greenhouse gases. 

D’Arrigo California added solar power to ranches in Salinas and Gonzales, Calif., in 2016, covering most of the energy needs at a 152,000-square-foot cooling and loading facility in Monterey County, according to the release.

“This natural energy is a resource that makes great environmental and economic sense which enables us to reduce energy costs while improving the bottom line,” John D’Arrigo said in the release.

Arlene Haffa, associate professor at California State University-Monterey Bay’s School of Natural Sciences, nominated D’Arrigo California for the recognition. She referred the company’s use of water-saving drip irrigation methods in the company’s fields.

“By reducing their water use, they are reducing climate impacts,” Haffa said in the release. “In addition, they paid to recycle the drip irrigation tape before there were any recycling markets for it. This leadership has helped to generate a pathway for other growers to use the technology as well.”

The company will have more than 17,000 acres in the Salinas Valley under drip irrigation this year.