skip to main content
skip to newscasts

Tuesday, February 27, 2024

Public News Service Logo
facebook instagram linkedin reddit youtube twitter
view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

ND makes the grade in a national report evaluating public school support; SCOTUS justices express free speech concerns about GOP-backed social media laws; NH "kids on campus" program boosts retention; proposed law bans hemp sales to Hoosiers younger than 21.

view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

The Supreme Court hears arguments on whether social media can restrict content. Biden advisors point to anti-democracy speeches at CPAC, and the President heads to the US-Mexico border appealing to voters on immigration and border issues.

view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

David meets Goliath in Idaho pesticide conflict, to win over Gen Z voters, candidates are encouraged to support renewable energy and rural America needs help from Congress to continue affordable internet programs.

Will 2023 Be MN's Big Year for Clean-Energy Policy?

play audio
Play

Thursday, December 15, 2022   

Despite gains in certain areas, Minnesota is still behind its current goals to reduce carbon emissions. But those in the clean-energy sector see big opportunities in 2023.

Groups pushing for a quicker transition to these sources feel the upcoming legislative session could pave the way for key decisions to accelerate progress.

Amelia Cerling Hennes, director of communications and public affairs for Clean Energy Economy Minnesota, said all the market pieces are there for the state to jump into the fast lane that leads to more non-fossil sources.

She said that should compel lawmakers to adopt a revised state goal of 100% clean energy by 2040.

"That's an important signal to businesses in the state," said Cerling Hennes, "saying, 'Hey, we are committed to this.'"

Cerling Hennes said the timing is right, with clean-energy costs at record lows. And the International Energy Agency now predicts that in a couple of years, renewables will replace coal as the largest source of electricity.

Regional utilities have made efforts to help with Minnesota's transition, but wonder about meeting the proposed goal while balancing affordability and reliability.

In trying to establish more progress, advocates say the Legislature could help by updating building standards for new development.

Becky Wacker is an area manager with Trane, an HVAC and energy services company. She noted that in a colder climate, homes and buildings use a lot of natural gas for heat.

She said that contributes to these structures accounting for 40% of carbon emissions. But there's emerging alternatives.

"Moving towards the electrification of heat in Minnesota, the technology is here," said Wacker. "There's great technology around heat pumps, heat recovery chillers, etc. There's also great thermal storage options."

Wacker said federal policy, such as the Inflation Reduction Act, gives states more tools to work with in embracing these technologies.

Meanwhile, advocates continue to push state lawmakers to approve matching funds for clean-energy projects provided by the federal infrastructure law.

As for reducing transportation emissions, Minnesota is pulling together resources to add more electric vehicle charging stations.

But Cerling Hennes suggested that the state can still dip into its large budget surplus to create an even more enticing market for consumers.

"Putting more money to build out EV charging networks so that consumers feel like if they do get an electric car," said Cerling Hennes, "they can go anywhere in the state and charge because there is still that, kind of, range anxiety that exists."



Disclosure: Clean Energy Economy Minnesota & Clean Grid Alliance Coalition contributes to our fund for reporting on Climate Change/Air Quality, Energy Policy, Environment. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.


get more stories like this via email
more stories
A new report shows that people who complete Prop 47-funded programs like those offered at Safe Harbor Recovery Center in Los Angeles are much less likely to be reincarcerated. (Safe Harbor)

Social Issues

play sound

Programs intended to reduce the chances that someone will end up back behind bars are working, according to a new analysis of California state data…


Social Issues

play sound

Arizona is gearing up for its presidential preference election that takes place in less than a month, and registered Democrats and Republicans were …

play sound

You might say "every day is 'bring your child to college day'" at New Hampshire's Manchester Community College. On-campus childcare programs are …


Social Issues

play sound

The number of Black mothers in Ohio who die during or following pregnancy continues to climb and health advocates said they hope to shine a light on t…

Legislative supporters say had South Dakota taken part in a new federally funded summer meal program for low-income families, an estimated 54,000 children around the state would have benefited. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

play sound

It's been an uphill battle for childhood nutrition advocates to advance meal access policies in the South Dakota Legislature. However, organizers say …

Environment

play sound

A cooperative effort has seeded more than 26,000 acres in eastern Nevada. It's all in an effort to increase desirable grasses, forbs and shrubs while …

Social Issues

play sound

Texas postal customers, especially in rural areas, are experiencing delays in mail delivery, and some letter carriers feel it could get worse…

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021