Go Solar

Community Solar Gardens

Go solar without installing panels

Community solar gardens are centrally-located solar photovoltaic (PV) systems that provide electricity to subscribers. 

Community solar gardens are for people who want to take advantage of solar energy but are unable install their own system. Perhaps you live in an apartment, have a shaded roof, or your organization doesn't have space for a system. You can subscribe to a community solar garden and receive credits on your utility bill.

How it works

  1. Solar is installed: Solar PV panels are installed in sunny locations to produce renewable electricity.
  2. You subscribe: Individual people or organizations can subscribe to enough solar to cover up to 120% of their annual electricity usage.
  3. You're credited on your utility bill: Each subscriber's utility bill is credited with the electricity created by their share of the solar garden.

Community solar is changing

In 2023 a new law included a major overhaul of Minnesota’s approach to community solar gardens. The law closed the old program to new applications and replaced it with the Low and Moderate-Income Accessible Community Solar Garden Program (LMI-Accessible CSG) that the Minnesota Department of Commerce will run.

Where to find a community solar garden

  1. Xcel Energy electricity customers
    Subscribe to projects offered by private developers based on garden availability. Visit Xcel's Solar*Rewards Community to search solar garden operators accepting subscriptions, or use CERTs Solar Directory to explore and contact solar companies.
     
  2. Those served by other Minnesota utilities
    Subscribe to a community solar garden if a program is offered by the utility (see Find a Garden below). Keep in mind some solar gardens may be fully subscribed, and you may be put on a waiting list.

Note: Developers create their own profiles in our solar directory. It's not an exhaustive list of developers. We aren't showing preference by approving profiles in this directory. Use the filtering tools in the directory to identify if you're looking for residential or commercial offerings.

Utilities Offering Community Solar Garden Programs

Regions: Central, Metro, Northeast (NE), Northwest (NW), Southeast (SE), Southwest (SW), West Central (WC)

Updated 2023.

 

Paths to community solar

 

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