Report: Clean Energy for Minnesota

Environment Minnesota Helps Minnesotans Plug into Clean Energy for Earth Day

Released by: Environment Minnesota Research and Policy Center

Executive Summary

Minneapolis—On Earth Day, Environment Minnesota released a new guide to help Minnesotans improve the energy performance of their homes and workplaces. The renewable energy and energy-saving measures proposed by Environment Minnesota’s Plug into Clean Energy Guide promise to lower energy bills and reduce pollution from power plants across the state.

“Minnesotans are concerned about the environmental impacts of our nation’s energy use and are looking for ways to make a difference,” said Ken Bradley, Director at Environment Minnesota. “This guide will provide Minnesotans with ways to improve the energy performance of their homes by adopting energy saving measures and tapping into clean, renewable energy sources like the sun and wind.”

America’s buildings consume more than 40 percent of our total energy, which amounts to almost 10 percent of all the energy used in the world. Much of this energy is wasted due to inadequate insulation, inefficient heating and cooling systems, and poor construction techniques. But off-the-shelf technologies can reduce that energy waste dramatically, lowering energy bills by as much as two-thirds.

“That’s the best part about making energy efficiency improvements,” said Ken Bradley. “They pay for themselves as consumers enjoy lower energy bills and a cleaner environment year after year. This guide is designed to help families cut through the clutter of information and pick the improvements that are right for them.”

Environment Minnesota is also launching a public education campaign this summer to provide Minnesota residents information about opportunities to shift to clean energy. Environment Minnesota’s Plug into Clean Energy [R1] resource center will help citizens with a simple, step-by-step approach to improve energy use in buildings, from lowering the thermostat in the winter all the way to installing rooftop solar panels. We also provide information on the most energy-efficient household appliance choices and links to Minnesota programs that can help residents invest in energy conservation and clean energy systems.

“From tax credits and rebates to free energy use assessments, there are myriad resources available to help home and business owners tackle the upfront cost of these improvements,” said Ken Bradley. “These are great programs; we want to make sure everyone knows about them.”

“We face big energy and environmental challenges because of the risky and dirty sources of our energy,” said Ken Bradley. “Minnesota leaders and national officials must take action to shift America to clean energy. But, we can also get started right here at home, saving energy, saving money and reducing global warming pollution by improving our buildings.”