06/14/2013 - 2:55pm
The Minnesota Department of Commerce, Division of Energy Resources has issued a formal invitation for potential contractors to submit White Papers concerning two topics in the State of Minnesota’s energy future.
The first topic to be addressed is microgrid development for energy assurance. Recommendations should address barriers and identify pathways to facilitate microgrid development.
Eligibility: Individuals and public or private entities with demonstrated experience related to the topic of microgrids and energy assurance.
Topic: Microgrid development
Source: Minnesota Department of Commerce
Deadline: July 1, 2013
The second request is funded by the Conservation Applied Research and Development (CARD) Grant Program and should investigate ...
06/14/2013 - 9:52am
Food service businesses—mostly restaurants and grocery stores—use 2.5 times more energy than the average commercial business. Think about it: all the stoves, ovens, heat lamps, dish washers, refrigerators, and fryers turning out meal after meal. It makes sense that they are energy intensive. Kitchens are also hectic places where energy wasters often get ignored amid hustle and bustle.
Stay tuned to learn more about recent projects at food service businesses in Minnesota that sought to start saving energy and money, and the resources that helped them complete these projects such as the Food Service Energy Leadership Program and the Minneapolis Energy Efficiency Business Loan and Grant Program. For more information on reducing energy consumption in small businesses and food services, see the Small Business Energy Reduction Guide...
06/13/2013 - 2:43pm
Honeywell has announced that it will be launching a city-controlled thermostat system to be used in homes. When a city’s energy demand spikes, the municipalities will enable an energy-reducing strategy with an automated demand response (ADR) to the participating homes.
In summer months, the use of air conditioning systems not only demands a large wattage per unit, but also causes sudden spikes in electricity demands—mainly due to the units cycling on and off. On especially hot days, the combined surge in city AC usage drastically increases the risk of blackouts.
The collective control of thermostats will, in theory, help to avoid brownouts and blackouts on the hottest days of the year when the power-grid stability is threatened. The Honeywell Total Connect Comfort with ADR thermostat is controlled via Wi-Fi and will be first available to the city of South Sioux City,...
06/12/2013 - 12:04pm
On June 5th, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) presented the regional 2012 President’s Environmental Youth Award to members of an environmental club at Mahtomedi High School for its Zephyr Wind Project. The President’s Environmental Youth Award program is an annual contest sponsored by the EPA to honor 10 winners across the nation for their creative environmental projects developed and implemented by K-12 students.
The award is not only a huge honor for the club and Minnesota, but is also only the second time in the program’s 11 year history that winners have come from Minnesota. Of the 2012 winners, the Zephyr Wind Project was the only one to come from the Great Lakes Region.
Mahtomedi’s winning Eco club raised $100,000 to build a 10-kilowatt wind turbine next to the school’s football field to power the stadium lights, scoreboard and...
06/11/2013 - 3:15pm
Are you interested in doing your own wind project? Let the Clean Energy Project Builder and CERTs help you get started with 4 steps!
Step 1: Do your research! Knowing information about wind (what it is, how it works, how to get it) is a key component in your project’s success. Lucky for you, we have already done the hard part! Follow the link to see a list of helpful wind studies.
Step 2: Site assessment. It is important to be familiar with both the purpose of your wind project, and site specific details before moving into the implementation and financing of a project. Here you will find some tools to help assess your site in order to understand its unique potential in conjunction with your...
06/11/2013 - 10:43am
Restaurants along University Avenue in Saint Paul are looking to lead their communities into energy efficiency thanks to a new program funded by the Corridors of Opportunity. Lead by the Neighborhood Development Center (NDC) and the Energy & Resource Efficiency Demonstration, the pilot project will provide energy efficiency outreach specifically to minority and immigrant-owned food-related businesses on University Ave. With the Green Line slated to be operating in 2014 (meaning a large potential for increased customer traffic) and restaurants being one of the highest energy consumers, now is the perfect time for businesses to make efficiency and conservation improvements.
The project looks to break down barriers standing in the way of energy conservation such as language, first costs (the initial cost as differentiated from operating costs), and the owner’s time—...
06/06/2013 - 11:27am
Are you interested in doing your own solar project? Let the Clean Energy Project Builder and CERTs help you get started with 4 steps!
Step 1: Do your research! Knowing information about solar (what it is, how it works, how to get it) is a key component in your project’s success. Lucky for you, we have already done the hard part! Follow the link to see a list of helpful solar studies.
Step 2: Site assessment. It is important to be familiar with both the purpose of your solar project, and site specific details before moving into the implementation and financing of a project. Here you will find some tools to help assess your site in order to understand its unique potential in conjunction with your...
06/03/2013 - 11:36am
For over four years, the City of Minneapolis has worked with residents, nonprofits, community organizations, schools, and businesses to reduce greenhouse gas emissions at the local level with the Climate Change Innovation Grants. The grants allowed participants to implement their own sustainability initiatives, and are funded through Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant dollars from the U.S. Department of Energy.
During the 2010-11 grant cycle, one of the recipients was the Food Service Energy Leadership Program (at the time housed at Eureka Recycling). This program had been working for over a year with a growing number of restaurants and grocery stores in the Twin Cities to identify energy-saving opportunities, recommend low-cost improvements and help businesses navigate larger investments. The opportunity for energy efficiency in restaurants and grocery stores is huge –...
06/03/2013 - 11:11am
Duluth has seen a lot of changes over the last few years, some of them in energy conservation and efficiency. The Duluth Energy Efficiency Program (DEEP) focuses on getting home owners to go from just knowing about energy efficiency to acting in their own homes. DEEP’s goal is to help homeowners save money, conserve energy, and reduce their environmental impact all while simply making their homes more energy efficient, healthy, and comfortable.
The program was initiated after a wave of economic downturn, high unemployment rate, housing crisis, energy price fluctuation, and global climate change all struck at the same time. The program works to help homeowners answer the questions; “Does my home need an energy assessment?”; “What improvements should I make?”; “Who can I trust to do the improvements right?...
06/02/2013 - 2:47pm
Recently, the National Resources Defense Council (NRDC) Sports Greening Project ranked the top 7 energy-efficient baseball stadiums in the MLB. Our hometown hero, the Minnesota Twins’ Target Field, came in second place with the Miami Marlins’ Marlins Park snatching the first place position.
Among other strong points, Target Field is the only ballpark with Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certifications in both construction and operations. Upgrades made in 2011 to equipment, lighting and HVAC systems reduced electricity use by more than 12 percent. Other energy efficient features include low-flow urinals, dual-flush toilets, aerated faucets, a rain recycle system that saves water, high-efficiency lighting, and a range of energy-conservation behaviors. A slightly less obvious way that Target Field is energy efficient is its prime location. The stadium is a...