Utility Regulators Oversee Planning for a Robust, Inclusive Grid in Minnesota

Date: 27 Apr 2020 | posted in: Energy, Energy Self Reliant States | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

In these comments, John Farrell outlines how Xcel Energy should improve its 2019 Integrated Distribution Plan to best serve the needs of Minnesota customers: increased access to distributed energy generation and a fair analysis of the benefits these systems provide to the grid.… Read More

Letter Supporting an Accurate Value of Solar

Date: 4 Nov 2019 | posted in: Energy, Energy Self Reliant States | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

The following letter to regulators in Kentucky shares ILSR’s experience with value of solar policy, including the key categories of value to assess, the importance of a utility-independent methodology, the tension between accuracy and usefulness in setting prices, and what to expect from previous exercises in other states.… Read More

Should Utilities Be Buying New Gas Plants?

Date: 25 Feb 2019 | posted in: Energy, Energy Self Reliant States | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

When a monopoly electric company in Minnesota recently went shopping to buy a new gas plant, we offered our candid assessment to the state’s regulators: affordable renewable energy and energy storage make this a risky bet for the state’s electricity customers.… Read More

Electric Utilities Must Stop Illegally Concealing Public Cost Data

Date: 4 Feb 2019 | posted in: Energy, Energy Self Reliant States | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

Utilities in many states have undercut competition by playing “hide the peanut.” Instead of sharing their avoided cost publicly, as required by Congress and state laws, utilities have hidden them behind a “trade secret” designation.… Read More

ILSR Submits Critique of Xcel Energy’s Value of Solar Calculation to Minnesota Regulators

Date: 3 Dec 2018 | posted in: Energy, Energy Self Reliant States | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

In November, ILSR submitted joint comments with Community Power and Cooperative Energy Futures to the Minnesota Public Utilities Commision expressing concerns about Xcel Energy’s 2019 Value of Solar calculation. The comments outline issues with the company’s assumptions and ways to improve them.… Read More

Rural Minnesotans Face “Corporate Indifference” of Internet Service Provider

Date: 4 Oct 2018 | posted in: MuniNetworks | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

A few weeks ago, we wrote about one of the community meetings held by the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission (PUC) to address mounting frustrations over poor service from Frontier Communications. Subscribers at the meeting in Wyoming, Minnesota, complained of download speeds as slow as 0.05 Megabits per second (Mbps), outages that lasted for weeks, and unhelpful customer service representatives.… Read More

What to Consider When Planning for Electric Vehicles

Date: 30 Jul 2018 | posted in: Energy, Energy Self Reliant States | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

In the coming years, as electric vehicle ownership and charging infrastructure grow, communities and the energy system will be transformed. This month, we submitted comments to the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission to inform a regulatory process on accommodating the expansion of electric vehicle use.… Read More

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

Supporting Affordable Residential Access to Community Solar in Minnesota

Date: 3 May 2018 | posted in: Energy, Energy Self Reliant States | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

In April, ILSR submitted comments in support of affordable residential access to community solar for review by Minnesota’s Public Utilities Commission. These comments concerned a proposed residential adder framework outlined as part of the state’s community solar program and Minnesota Department of Commerce Value of Solar calculation. We argue that, in a recent analysis submitted to the Commission by Xcel Energy, the utility exaggerated costs likely to be incurred under this new framework. Our comments support those made by allies such as Cooperative Energy Futures and advocate for adder calculations that ensure financeability and broad participation among residential subscribers to the state’s community solar program.… Read More

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