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

Eden Valley-Watkins High School installs solar panels and inverters

Recent Blog Posts

Waconia Public Schools third-party solar ribbon cutting
Peter Lindstrom
Thu, 11/02/2017 - 4:36pm
Minneapolis, Champlin, Forest Lake Area Schools, Lester Prairie, Dakota County, Waconia Public Schools. What do these local governments and schools districts have in common? They are just a sample of public entities that have utilized third-party financing as a means to place solar arrays on...
Ice dam on a home in winter
MN Dept. of Commerce
Wed, 11/01/2017 - 12:06pm
Before winter gets into full swing, Minnesota homeowners have the opportunity to act now to help prevent ice dams and costly water damage to ceilings and walls.   What’s the problem?   Ice dams are primarily caused by the presence of warm air in the attic, combined with snow...
Energy-themed pumpkin stencils
Dan Thiede
Tue, 10/31/2017 - 10:17am
As Energy Awareness Month comes to a close, celebrate with these clean energy-themed pumpkin stencils! It’s a fun way to energize your neighborhood and teach your kids about energy efficiency and renewable energy. While you’re at it, you can also avoid cold weather terrors like...

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
  • Shelli-Kae Foster, Youth Energy Summit (YES!)
  • Troy J. Goodnough, University of Minnesota Morris
  • Sonya Gylsen, Master Naturalist
  • Erik Hatlestad, Clean Up the River Environment (CURE)
  • Steve Nelson, Environmental Well & Septic
  • John Paulson, City of Hutchinson
  • Leroy Petersen, Kandiyohi County and City of Willmar Economic Development Commission
  • 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 University of Minnesota Regional Sustainable Development Partnerships and Extension Great Plains Institute Southwest Regional Development Commission