Working Together, Small Solar Firms Compete With Big-Name Rivals — Episode 45 of Local Energy Rules Podcast

Date: 5 Jun 2017 | posted in: Energy, Energy Self Reliant States, Podcast | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

Fast-improving technology and growing consumer interest continue to put momentum behind the clean energy transition. Unlike utilities and other industry players that have largely ignored growth opportunities as market dynamics shift, a coalition of independent solar companies is harnessing its … Read More

Minnesota Regulators Eye Subcommittee to Resolve Distributed Generation Disputes

Date: 24 May 2017 | posted in: Energy, Energy Self Reliant States | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

Better technology and falling costs for years have buoyed the clean energy economy, steadily putting rooftop solar, energy efficiency, and other distributed energy resources within reach of more U.S. households and businesses. Still, many utilities remain averse to accommodating these … Read More

Pioneering Community Solar in the Granite State – Episode 44 of Local Energy Rules Podcast

Date: 19 May 2017 | posted in: Energy, Energy Self Reliant States, Podcast | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

New Hampshire, home to some of the highest utility costs in the nation, could be fertile ground for community energy projects that promote lower-cost, renewable generation — especially after investors in one shared solar array pioneered a strategy to promote … Read More

Westchester Power Puts New York Communities in Charge of Energy Future – Episode 43 of Local Energy Rules Podcast

Date: 28 Apr 2017 | posted in: Energy, Energy Self Reliant States | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

A growing number of small- and mid-size communities are harnessing their shared market power to promote local renewable energy. Using a state policy called community choice aggregation, these communities can unseat powerful monopoly utilities and seize greater control over their … Read More

Xcel Has Room for Renewable Generation on its Minnesota Grid. So Where Is It?

Date: 24 Apr 2017 | posted in: Energy, Energy Self Reliant States | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

Determining exactly how much local renewable generation can reach Xcel Energy customers in Minnesota hinges in part on how many of these projects the existing grid can accommodate. To that end, the state’s Public Utilities Commission compelled the utility last … Read More

Residential Subscribers in Focus as Minnesota Weighs Community Solar Incentives

Date: 22 Apr 2017 | posted in: Energy, Energy Self Reliant States | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

In its filing on providing community solar incentives for residential subscribers, the Department outlined a loose framework for the “adder,” designed to encourage community solar developers to pursue projects accessible that target residential subscribers. The agency pitched an incentive worth … Read More

Getting the Price Right for Local Wind and Solar

Date: 7 Apr 2017 | posted in: Energy, Energy Self Reliant States | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

A federal policy enacted nearly 40 years ago has breathed life into an ongoing argument at the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission over utility opposition to a wind-solar hybrid project proposed in the rural city of Red Lake Falls. The law, … Read More

Rural Solar At Risk As Co-ops Push for Less Oversight

Date: 30 Mar 2017 | posted in: Energy, Energy Self Reliant States | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

Minnesota’s governor recently vetoed anti-renewables legislation that threatens rural solar development, but the bill’s likely resurgence means the state remains among a growing crop of Midwestern states facing the prospect of heavy-handed limitations on solar growth. The Minnesota legislation would … Read More

Unlocking Universal Access to Community Solar

Date: 23 Mar 2017 | posted in: Energy, Energy Self Reliant States | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

As more community solar is brought to market, however, important questions loom about access and the distribution of benefits.

Finding answers requires an intentional approach from regulators, developers, and utilities alike to ensure that low-income households, and others traditionally shut out of owning renewable generation, have a chance to opt in.

This month, ILSR submitted the following comments to the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission to inform its discussion of universal access to community solar.  They are included below, lightly edited for clarity.… Read More

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