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

Two Decades of Solar Pioneers in Sacramento – Episode 27 of Local Energy Rules Podcast

Date: 7 Aug 2015 | posted in: Energy, Energy Self Reliant States | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

The publicly-owned Sacramento Municipal Utility District, or SMUD, had already installed the first utility-scale PV array in the nation back in 1984. By the early 1990s, the utility saw a potential for rooftop solar and launched its PV Pioneer program, … Read More

Small-Scale Solar Contributes 13% of New Power Plant Capacity in 2014

Date: 10 Mar 2015 | posted in: Energy, Energy Self Reliant States | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

The growth of solar has continued at a furious pace, with a new record of 6.2 gigawatts installed in the United States in 2014. But the bigger tale may be the persistent growth of small-scale solar, on residential and non-residential … Read More

The Three Biggest Solar Charts of 2014

Date: 6 Jan 2015 | posted in: Energy, Energy Self Reliant States | 3 Facebooktwitterredditmail

The rise of solar power allows a further democratizing of the electricity system, and these charts illustrate how 2014 was a banner year for solar, but particularly distributed solar power. Apologies for the re-post of these charts, but I wanted to … Read More

A 2-Year City Workplan for Energy Democracy

Date: 21 Nov 2014 | posted in: Energy, Energy Self Reliant States | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

The first-in-the-nation city-utility partnership has been framed in Minneapolis, but can the city and its utilities really deliver substantive movement toward an equitable energy economy in the next two years?

It all depends on the workplan, and the grassroots team at Minneapolis Energy Options has delivered.… Read More

We Have “Value for Solar,” but Should We Use It?

Date: 21 Oct 2014 | posted in: Energy, Energy Self Reliant States | 6 Facebooktwitterredditmail

Earlier this year, Minnesota became the first state to formalize dozens of studies by adopting a “value of solar” formula that would fundamentally change the relationship between solar energy producers and their utility. It’s designed to have the utility accurately … Read More

2 Charts Show Solar’s Jump to Top Spot for New U.S. Power Generation

Date: 16 Oct 2014 | posted in: Energy, Energy Self Reliant States | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

Want proof that distributed solar is rapidly growing?  Look no further than these two charts, showing how solar provided over a quarter of new power plant capacity in 2013 (6% from residential solar alone!) and 43% in the first half of … Read More

The Solar Opportunity

Date: 18 Jun 2013 | posted in: Energy, Energy Self Reliant States | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

The coming of solar grid parity offers an opportunity for millions of Americans to go solar affordably. But it also means a potential transformation, a democratization of an electricity system long dominated by centrally-controlled utilities and centralized ownership and production … Read More

Solar Costs and Grid Prices On a Collision Course

Date: 4 Apr 2013 | posted in: Energy, Energy Self Reliant States | 1 Facebooktwitterredditmail

With the cost of solar continuing to fall rapidly (50% in the past five years) and electricity prices rising steadily, if slowly, the approach of solar grid parity is near. The following chart illustrates the trajectory of solar cost and … Read More

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