News Release

Ten ways Minnesota cities can go solar

New toolkit offers best practices for local communities to harness the power of the sun
For Immediate Release

Minneapolis, MN -- America’s cities and towns continue to be best-positioned to lead the clean energy revolution. To aid those efforts, Environment Minnesota Research and Policy Center has released an updated toolkit, Ten Ways Your Community Can Go Solar, that offers practical ways for localities to take advantage of the millions of rooftops across Minnesota and adopt more solar energy. 

“Solar energy is clean, abundant, close to home and more affordable than ever. It should be a no-brainer for Minnesota communities to go solar,” said Timothy Schaefer, Director of Environment Minnesota Research and Policy Center. “Some of our cities, like Minneapolis, are already forging ahead with policies designed to quickly bring the benefits of solar. We want to help other Minnesota cities learn from those examples, from what is and isn’t working, to continue propelling the transition to renewable energy. ” 

Ten Ways Your Community Can Go Solar details how cities can lead by example, expand access, remove obstacles and work with other institutions to harness solar energy. It also includes case studies where these policies have been successful. Environment Minnesota Research and Policy Center is also holding a webinar series with its national partner Environment America to discuss these tactics.

The toolkit is part of Environment Minnesota Research and Policy Center’s ongoing work to encourage solar energy adoption. The state group has helped organize a bipartisan group of more than 300 mayors from across the country, including Jacob Frey of Minneapolis and Shep Harris of Golden Valley, who have signed onto a statement calling for more solar energy to power American communities.

"When it comes to solar energy in our cities, progress is contagious," said Ben Sonnega, Go Solar campaign associate with Environment Minnesota Research and Policy Center. "But some places need help getting started, or have hit roadblocks at some step along the way. Even the top solar cities could take their energy leadership to another level. We want to give communities the tools to achieve their full solar potential."

"Minneapolis has done a lot of good things to make solar energy more accessible and affordable. But there are still far too many unfair barriers to solutions like community choice aggregation and utility municipalization in Minnesota," said Schaefer. "So there's still plenty of work left to do."