Minnesota Reboots Community Solar Program With Focus on Lower-Income Residents

13 Feb 2024


Minnesota community solar developers are adjusting their business plans as the state’s program undergoes some of the biggest changes since its launch over a decade ago.

One of the oldest and largest in the country, Minnesota’s community solar program has spurred development of more than 800 megawatts worth of solar capacity since launching in 2013. Customers subscribe to shares of projects and receive monthly credits on their utility bills, typically lowering overall energy costs.

The concept has been hailed as a way to spread the benefits of solar to customers who lack rooftop space, sun exposure, or the financial means to install solar panels on their own. In practice, the biggest beneficiaries have been commercial customers, which subscribe to 82% of the program’s capacity, according to data tracked by the Institute for Local Self-Reliance.

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