Clean Energy Businesses Rally at State Capitol
Lt. Gov. Tina Smith Calls for Bipartisan Policies to Grow Clean Energy Jobs in Minnesota
St. Paul, MN (April 25, 2017) – More than 100 leaders of clean energy businesses in Minnesota rallied at the State Capitol today to demonstrate support for public policies that encourage energy efficiency and renewable energy, such as wind and solar.
Claiming the state’s first Clean Energy Business Day at the Capitol, leaders from six businesses, including EDF Renewable Energy, Innovative Power Systems (IPS), Juhl Energy, TruNorth Solar, Werner Electric and Xcel Energy led a panel discussion, making the business case for clean energy.
“As a result of the 2007 Next Generation Energy Act, entrepreneurs and businesses, both large and small, have created a vibrant clean energy economy in Minnesota that employs more than 54,000 people with high paying wages averaging $71,000 a year,” said Eric Pasi of IPS, a solar company based in Roseville, Minn.
Martin Morud of TruNorth solar of Edina pointed out that continued strong bipartisan support for clean energy policies can further grow the state’s clean energy sector. “Our state’s renewable energy policies send clear market signals, telling investors that Minnesota is open for business, driving job growth and investments in our communities.”
Earlier this year, Lt. Gov. Tina Smith announced a bi-partisan initiative to create a 50 percent Renewable Energy Standard by 2030.
“Ten years ago, Minnesota enacted the bipartisan Next Generation Energy Act and proved that we can have affordable, reliable, and clean energy,” said Lt. Gov. Tina Smith. “Today, because of bipartisan leadership and a sustained effort, more than 21 percent of Minnesota's electricity comes from renewable sources. If we redouble our efforts, and raise Minnesota’s Renewable Energy Standard to 50 percent by 2030, we will improve air quality, continue to drive down the cost of renewable energy, and generate thousands of new energy jobs.”
A 2014 study conducted by the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development found that renewable energy is Minnesota’s fastest growing sector.
The Clean Energy Business Day at the Capitol was sponsored by Clean Energy Economy Minnesota (CEEM) and co-convened by the Minnesota Solar Energy Industries Association (MnSEIA), U.S. Green Building Council Minnesota (USGBC-MN), and Wind on the Wires (WOW).