West Central Region

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West Central CERT empowers communities and their members to adopt energy conservation, energy efficiency, and renewable energy technologies and practices. Join us!

 
West Central Region Priority Areas:

  • Work with farmers and small rural businesses to educate them about opportunities around energy efficiency and renewable energy projects
  • Help farmers and rural businesses access funding for clean energy projects, including from existing resources like the USDA Renewable Energy for America Program(REAP) and Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE)
  • Foster closer connections with regional cooperative utilities and municipal utilities to help increase adoption of both energy efficiency and renewable energy
  • Advance community solar gardens in and with communities across the West Central region and work with local cooperatives to reach new subscribers
  • Explore connections between planning and energy, including around specific efforts like prairie restoration

Download a regional factsheet to learn more >>

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West Central Contact

Kristi Fernholz
Kristi Fernholz
West Central CERT Coordinator, UMVRDC
Email, 320-289-1981 ×106

Upcoming West Central Events

Eden Valley-Watkins High School installs solar panels and inverters

Recent Blog Posts

Nest Smart Programmable Thermostat
MN Dept. of Commerce
Fri, 04/15/2016 - 1:34pm
With tax day, it’s no wonder that Minnesota and the nation recognize April as Financial Capability Month. It’s a great reminder for us that one of the best ways to save money is by saving energy! There are many basic no- and low-cost measures you can take to reduce energy use, cutting...
lettuce happily growing in a deep winter greenhouse
Greg Schweser
Thu, 04/07/2016 - 12:06am
Interested in experimenting with the University of Minnesota on passive solar greenhouse technology on your farm, community organization, or business in Greater Minnesota? Do you want to learn how to grow crops all year without relying on fossil fuels? Are you interested in helping others learn...
MREA solar training
Lissa Pawlisch
Wed, 04/06/2016 - 11:49pm
The Steve Hansen Memorial Scholarship Fund from the Midwest Renewable Energy Association (MREA) honors Steve Hansen, a brilliant educator who taught thousands of students in Wisconsin about the importance of renewable energy, environmental sustainability, and earth stewardship. The Steve Hansen...

West Central Case Studies

Director and Instructor of the Center for Renewable Energy Education & Demonstration, Roger Aiken recently took some time to sit down with CERTs...
NEEDS PDF; TPD: March 18-24 The City of Paynesville sensed for some time that they needed to replace their Heating Ventilating and Air Conditioning...
In 2009, the University of Delaware created a model that helps to more effectively provide communities with support and information about...

West Central Steering Committee

  • Bob Bonawitz, UMN SW Regional Sustainable Development Partnership Board
  • Eric Buchanan, UMN West Central Research and Outreach Center
  • David Fluegel, UMN SW Regional Sustainable Development Partnership Director
  • Troy J. Goodnough, University of Minnesota Morris
  • Sonya Gylsen, Master Naturalist
  • Steve Nelson, Environmental Well & Septic
  • Yusef Orest, Agralite Electric Cooperative
  • John Paulson, City of Hutchinson
  • Leroy Petersen, Kandiyohi County and City of Willmar Economic Development Commission
  • Scott Randall, Solar Energy Professional
  • Bob Ryan, European Energy Connections
  • Connie Schmoll, Kandiyohi County & Willmar Economic Development Commission
  • Dan Tepfer, Kandiyohi Power Cooperative

West Central CERT Operating Procedures

Volunteer & Get Involved

Volunteer & Get Involved
Get involved and make connections with others passionate about clean energy! Learn more.

CERTs Supported Projects

See CERTs-supported projects
CERTs awards Seed Grants to community groups for energy efficiency and clean energy projects. See projects or learn more about grants.

West Central Community Groups


Use our map of local community organizations to connect with a group in your part of the state! Explore map.

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More Resources for the West Central Region

 
Strategic Energy Plan: Each regional team spent considerable time mapping regional energy use and identifying clean energy opportunities in its Regional Strategic Energy Plan. Read all the details on the Regional Plans page.

Other Publications:

Minnesotans building a clean energy future

         

    CERTs Partners:

Minnesota Department of Commerce Division of Energy Resources University of Minnesota Regional Sustainable Development Partnerships and Extension Great Plains Institute Southwest Regional Development Commission