Renewable Energy Advocates Unsatisfied with Minnesota Power’s Planned Solar Garden

Community Solar Garden Scheduled to Open in 2016

Minnesota Power is planning a community Solar Garden, but some community members are not quite satisfied with the plans. 

A community Solar Garden is a solar electric array with multiple subscribers who can purchase a portion of the power produced by the array and receive a credit on their electricity bill.

In 2013 the Minnesota Legislature passed a community solar garden policy which set the rules on running programs. 

Minnesota Power was not required to develop a solar program, but proposed one to the Minnesota public Utilities Commission in September.

But community members and renewable energy advocates submitted more than 285 comments to the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission, asking them to ensure that the Minnesota Power’s Community Solar Garden program is open to all who want to participate.

Many of the advocates feel that Minnesota Power’s proposal doesn’t include a path for community developed gardens.

Minnesota Power says because it is a small program they are still feeling out the demand for solar power, and they believe their program is a way to make solar energy more affordable

However, the advocates say they would like to see some modifications to the Minnesota Power Community Solar Garden Proposal to make renewable energy more accessible.

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