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Bill hike could be coming for Minnesota Power customers

Minnesota Power customers could soon be paying about 6.7% more on their electric bills under a proposal approved yesterday by the Public Utilities Commission (PUC). The money would be used to reduce electric costs for 11 industrial customers by 5%. This industrial subsidy, and the associated charge for other customers, is possible under a law passed in 2015 for “energy-intensive,…

More consideration needed of bill to reduce regulation of new power generation

A bill before the state Senate Energy and Utilities Committee today would eliminate a step in the regulatory process for constructing new large renewable energy facilities. While there may be ways to streamline regulation without weakening consumer protections, we must fully consider the consequences of a possibly significant change to the way Minnesota handles new energy production. For…

Governor Dayton signs law allowing new Xcel plant without usual regulatory review

Yesterday, Governor Dayton signed into law the bill allowing Xcel Energy to build a new natural gas power plant in Sherburne County without the usual regulatory review. The bill, described in this Star Tribune article, will give Xcel permission to build the new plant at its existing Sherco generating station. Two of three large coal…

New bills will ensure consumer protections in residential PACE financing

Today, CUB published a letter supporting HF 1377 and SF 1088, bills to suspend a type of energy improvement financing so that consumer protections can be put in place. Property-assessed clean energy financing, or PACE, allows a property owner to make energy improvements, using a loan that they repay through their property tax bill. Property owners can make cost-effective…

Is your home leaking energy — and money?

Sealing air leaks is one of the easiest ways to reduce energy loss in your home. Air that leaks through a home’s windows, doors, ceilings, walls, the foundation, and other areas can waste up to one-third (!!) of your home’s energy budget — not to mention all the extra emissions that are added due to…