Minneapolis Ranked Among Midwest’s Solar Leaders

Media Contacts
Timothy Schaefer

Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey and Environment Minnesota Director Tim Schaefer met to discuss solar power in Minneapolis at Mayor Frey’s City Hall office.

Minneapolis – The City of Minneapolis ranks 35th for solar energy in a new report, landing it among the nation’s/region’s leaders for installing clean energy from the sun.

“Cities like Minneapolis and Eden Prairie are leading the way to a future powered by clean, renewable energy,” said Director Tim Schaefer of Environment Minnesota. “By tapping into more of our state’s vast solar energy potential, we can benefit from cleaner air and fight climate change.”

Minneapolis ranked ahead of Baltimore, MD and just behind Tampa, FL for megawatts of solar energy (per capita) as of year-end 2017. The city is expanding solar energy to help meet its carbon emissions reduction goal of 30% by 2025. But leaders in nearby cities, like Eden Prairie, are also aggressively pushing for a clean energy future.

“Cities like Eden Prairie are particularly well-suited to join Minnesota’s solar movement,” said Eden Prairie Mayor Nancy Tyra-Lukens. “We have the rooftops and infrastructure for optimal solar installation, and can craft policies to meet the specific needs of the folks who live here. We’re committed to supporting the advancement of solar power in our community.”

The report, Shining Cities 2018: How Smart Local Policies Are Expanding Solar Power in America, shows that the top 20 solar cities, comprising just 0.1 percent of the country’s land mass, account for 4 percent of U.S. solar capacity.

“We are in a moment when progress on renewable energy will come from cities across the country,” said Schaefer. “More local leaders should step up and start plugging their communities into the clean and virtually limitless power of the sun.”

Shining Cities is the fifth annual report from the Environment Minnesota Research & Policy Center. Each year, the survey ranks nearly 70 of the nation’s major cities by megawatts of solar energy.