Regional Clean Energy News

Senator Nick Frentz and Virginia Rutter from Nokomis Partners were guest speakers at the Jan. 10 Southcentral Minnesota Clean Energy Council forum hosted by South Central Service Cooperative. Frentz serves as co-chair on the Governor’s advisory council on clean energy and climate.

Both the climate change subcabinet and advisory council on climate build on existing inter-agency collaboration to take bold and innovative actions that are needed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and get back on track to reach 100% reliance on clean energy by 2050. Rutter provided a developer’s perspective on solar power and on how local energy solutions will play a role in the energy transition.

More here.

By Bernadette Heier | Updated January 10, 2020, at 8:21 PM

NORTH MANKATO Minn. (KEYC) — The South Central Minnesota Clean Energy Council continued the hot topic of climate change at its discussion forum on Friday morning.

Ways to implement transitions to cleaner energy in the state were discussed by environmental advocates, county commissioners, developers, business leaders and concerned citizens attending the forum.

Electric vehicle usage and availability was another topic, as Minnesota’s number one contributor to greenhouse gas emissions comes from transportation.

Video here.

By Bernadette Heier, KEYC | October 29, 2019 at 7:39 PM CDT - Updated October 29 at 10:36 PM

MANKATO, Minn. (KEYC) — A study of Minnesota State University, Mankato shows a decrease in their carbon footprint in the last seven years.

“What we’ve seen over that seven-year period, 2011-2012 and 2017-2018 is a 15.6 percent decrease in the carbon footprint,” said former Physics professor Louis Schwarzkopf, one of the main brains behind the study.

A carbon footprint is the account of greenhouse gases emitted from University activities, like electricity usage, burning of natural gas for heat and tailpipe emissions [from] cars [and] buses.

Video is here.

By Brian Arola, Mankato Free Press, Sep 21, 2019

Mankato area leaders say they intend to jumpstart the region’s electric vehicle infrastructure and adoption.

Community stakeholders plan to add level-three charging stations in Mankato, North Mankato and St. Peter. These higher level stations recharge electric vehicles to about a 180-mile range within 30 minutes, but they haven’t been as widely available as slower level one or two chargers.

In encouraging more people to adopt electric vehicles Saturday, Jon Olseth said bolstering the region’s charging station infrastructure makes all the difference.

Continued here.

By Ryan Sjoberg | July 12, 2019 | KEYC News

"It's about decarbonizing and leading on keeping Minnesota a leader in decarbonizing so we address the climate crisis. That is absolutely critical. That's why we have proposed a really bold and ambitious 100% carbon free standard by 2050."

The video is here.

by Boyd Huppert, KARE 11, May 21, 2019

Not so long ago, the idea didn't seem to have a prayer.

Electricity from the sun – in Minnesota?

Yet, perched on a hill at their Mankato campus, the School Sisters of Notre Dame foresaw a higher power. Several stories higher.

“This was our first solar project,” Sister Mary Kay Gosch said from the roof of Notre Dame Hall.

Gosch, the convent’s campus administrator, stands amid an array of solar collectors that now generate roughly $6500 worth electricity annually.

Continued here.

By Tim Krohn, Mankato Free Press, April 22, 2019

MANKATO — Grad student Jon Richter opened the gates to a long glass tube to let water flow through and start to spin a plastic model of a vertical axis wind turbine blade as Minnesota Department of Commerce Commissioner Steve Kelley watched.

He and other students in the engineering lab at Minnesota State University are testing where to best place turbines on farm sites, businesses and other locations to get the most efficiency from them.

"With the energy demand, we need something else" beyond traditional horizontal axis wind turbines, Richter said.

Continued here.

By Alison Durheim, KEYC, February 8, 2019

Last May, the minimum content of biodiesel fuel oil in diesel fuel increased from 10 percent to 20 percent in Minnesota, a win for soybean farmers.

Supporters say it's also been a boost to the environment.

"American Lung Association estimates that B-20 and B-5 during a year, have taken about 223,000 cars off the roads in the state of Minnesota. So, huge benefits in environment, benefits to soybean producer and gives us another market for product," said Mike Youngerberg, Minnesota Soybean Sr. Director of Product Development and Commercialization.

Video here.