Two of the leading voices in the debate over legislation involving a proposed natural gas plant northwest of Minneapolis no longer actively oppose the bill.
Minnesota could create 15,000 jobs and save more than $3.1 billion by reducing energy use in municipal buildings, universities, schools and hospitals, according to a new report.
Minnesota’s largest utility this spring will offer businesses and ratepayers the opportunity to buy shares of power directly from two renewable energy sources.
A plan floated by Minnesota lawmakers to exempt rural electric cooperatives from virtually all regulatory oversight would allow these utilities to restrict development of local solar power, even where their member-owners support renewable energy. Legislation introduced last month and working its way through the state’s House (HF234) and Senate (SF141) would put co-op boards themselves, rather than the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission (PUC), in charge of resolving customer disputes over rates and other policies. Disguised as “local control,” the measure undermines the objective role of the Commission as a mediator between cooperatives and their members. Co-ops provide electricity across greater Minnesota, and have in recent years come under fire as sharp opponents of distributed solar generation. Customer have complained about outsize fees for having rooftop solar – sometimes masked as other charges, like for a new meter.
Bills in the Minnesota legislature gaining bipartisan support would prohibit state regulators from overseeing fixed charges paid by distributed generation customers of cooperatives and municipally owned power companies.
A new report aims to persuade Minnesota legislators that clean energy is a strong part of Minnesota’s economy.
Addressing climate change has become one of the focal points of Gov. Mark Dayton’s administration. Though the state has missed its 2015 goal of reducing greenhouse gases, the governor’s office has created more coordinated leadership to direct agencies on sustainability.
A group of large industrial users joined consumer advocates in decrying a bill that would permit Xcel Energy to build a 786 megawatt combined cycle natural gas plant without regulatory approval.
Residents of a Minnesota city wondering if their rooftops of their homes and businesses have any potential for solar panels have a new web-based resource.
Minnesota’s second biggest utility, Great River Energy, has begun to significantly ramp down the output of its largest coal plant as the market has shifted to wind power and natural gas production.