Minnesota Regulators Schedule Hearings on Frontier Communications’ Anti-Competition Actions

Date: 7 Jun 2018 | posted in: MuniNetworks | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

National ISPs with millions of customers are some of the most hated companies in the U.S. Poor customer service, contract tricks, and a refusal to upgrade services are only a few of the common complaints from subscribers who are often trapped due to lack of competition. Frontier Communications is proudly carrying on that tradition of deficiency in Minnesota. In fact, the company’s excellence at skullduggery has drawn the attention of the state’s Public Utilities Commission (PUC), which launched an investigation into the service quality of Frontier this spring.… Read More

Utility Proposes Electric Vehicle Charging Pilot, But Will Anyone Opt In for No Benefit?

Date: 1 Mar 2018 | posted in: Energy, Energy Self Reliant States | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

A Minnesota utility proposes a new program allowing electric vehicle owners to charge their vehicles at night for a lower price, but monthly maintenance fees mean drivers won’t save any money. ILSR provides comments to the state’s Public Utilities Commission illustrating the problem and proposing a solution.… Read More

Minnesota Utility Takes Baby Steps Toward Broadening Community Solar Access

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

Minnesota’s largest utility is planning a pilot community solar program specifically targeted to low-income customers, an important first step in bridging significant gaps in accessing the benefits of the state’s burgeoning clean energy economy. Xcel Energy filed a program outline … Read More

Slow-to-Accelerate EV Charging Program Provides Lessons for Improvement

Date: 12 Jul 2017 | posted in: Energy, Energy Self Reliant States | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

Minnesota’s largest investor-owned utility, Xcel Energy, last month reported sparse participation in a program designed to deliver value to customers who charge their electric vehicles when it’s most convenient for the grid. But despite its benefits for the grid and cost savings for customers, the initiative appears stuck in neutral.

By April 2017, a year and a half after its launch, just 95 Xcel customers had opted in to the state-mandated electric vehicle charging tariff. With nearly 1,000 plug-in vehicles registered to Minnesota drivers — a bulk of them likely in Xcel’s metro-area territory — participation numbers hover well below reasonable expectations. Why?… 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

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