UMD Purchases Solar Energy from Minnesota Power

DULUTH, Minn. – The University of Minnesota Duluth has announced it has purchased a 100 kilowatt block at the new Minnesota Power Community Solar Garden in Wrenshall.

The community solar garden is an array divided into blocks that customers subscribe to in order to meet part or all of their energy needs.

The over $213,000 purchase comes after UMD pledged to reduce green house gas emissions by 25 percent by 2020, as well as a goal of being carbon neutral by 2050.

UMD Chancellor Lendley Black describes the purchase as an investment that will pay for itself in electricity savings over time.

“By pursuing the Community Solar Garden contract, UMD is supporting solar in northern Minnesota,” Chancellor Black said in a press release Wednesday. “This is something that our students value and want our campus to pursue as we make progress towards our sustainability goals.”

The University says the investment is shared among three Student Life auxiliary units: 40 percent Dining Services, 40 percent Housing and Residence Life, and 20 percent Transportation and Parking Services. As a result, these departments will receive annual discounts on their electricity bills.

UMD’s 100 kilowatt block is 10% of the Minnesota Power Community Solar Garden.