Today, the Public Utilities Commission held its final hearing and unanimously approved with modifications Xcel Energy’s 15-year energy plan (Integrated Resource Plan). After two years of rigorous study, Xcel Energy proposed a Midwest-leading energy plan for the next 15 years – doubling the amount of wind and solar on its system and taking significant strides to reduce coal with the retiring of Sherco units 1 and 2 in the mid-2020s. Xcel’s proposed energy plan saw broad support from customers, including over 10,000 Minnesotans; cities of Becker, Red Wing, and Minneapolis; Sherburne County; clean energy organizations, and the St. Paul Area Chamber of Commerce.
This week Minnesota Public Radio released a report describing how real estate company Madison Equities is overhauling three of their large downtown St. Paul buildings. The most visible upgrade will be the replacing the neon lighting on the iconic First National Bank Building with LED lighting. This is part of a comprehensive $12.5 million retrofit project resulting in a 40 percent reduction in energy use between the three properties. And while the end result of this project will mean big savings, it actually started with a small decision – to benchmark how much energy the buildings were using in the first place.
Fresh Energy was proud to sponsor a net zero home included in the 2016 AIA Minnesota’s Homes By Architects tour. Learn more about the home.
Mark and Kate Hanson’s home in Roseville, Minnesota, has many special features – but one of the most exciting is their use of clean electricity for heating, cooling, keeping the lights on, and powering the family cars. For nearly 25 years, Fresh Energy has been working to transition to a clean energy system in the state. Increasingly we see that an “all-electric economy” – like the one modeled by Mark and Kate Hanson – may just be the answer.
Fresh Energy Annual Report for Fiscal Year 2015-16 is now available online.
Authored by agriculture leaders, a new law sends a clear signal to the solar industry regarding a preferred practice for use of land on solar sites. State-wide standard will meaningfully help Minnesota’s bees, monarchs, pheasants, and songbirds, by providing abundant, high-quality foraging habitat on solar sites.