Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

News

Minnesota Solar Developers Anticipate Grid Connection Relief with New Ombudsperson Legislation

Minnesota Solar Developers Anticipate Grid Connection Relief with New Ombudsperson Legislation
Minnesota Solar Developers Anticipate Grid Connection Relief with New Ombudsperson Legislation

Minnesota solar developers, long frustrated with delays and disputes in connecting projects to the electric grid, are anticipating relief through new legislation. Recently passed by state lawmakers, the legislation mandates the hiring of an interconnection ombudsperson by the Public Utilities Commission.

This role is specifically designed to support clean energy companies by offering guidance, information, and mediation for projects up to 10 megawatts seeking grid connection.

The initiative responds to years of complaints from solar companies, particularly regarding disputes with utilities, notably Xcel Energy, which have led to significant project delays. Logan O’Grady of the Minnesota Solar Energy Industries Association highlighted the aim to streamline the interconnection process and manage disagreements more effectively through the ombudsperson role.

The legislation outlines the ombudsperson’s responsibilities, including tracking disputes, facilitating mediation between customers and utilities, reviewing policies, and convening stakeholder groups to address conflicts.

Minnesota Solar Developers Anticipate Grid Connection Relief with New Ombudsperson Legislation

Minnesota Solar Developers Anticipate Grid Connection Relief with New Ombudsperson Legislation

Developers and installers across rooftop, commercial, and community solar projects will be able to seek assistance from the ombudsperson, potentially reducing the need for formal complaints and lengthy dispute resolutions.

Importantly, the ombudsperson does not replace existing dispute processes but aims to complement them by providing quicker resolutions and clearer communication channels. This approach is expected to address issues such as misunderstandings over information and improve overall efficiency in the interconnection process.

State Representative Patty Acomb emphasized the independence of the ombudsperson role, which is likely to garner less skepticism compared to utility-led initiatives. Stakeholders in the solar industry, including Bobby King of Solar United Neighbors and Michael Allen of All Energy Solar, have expressed support, anticipating benefits such as centralized information, advocacy for smoother interconnections, and reduced litigation.

Minnesota joins over a dozen other states in implementing such positions, drawing from varied approaches across the country. Legal expert Sky Stanfield highlighted the potential for the ombudsperson to identify patterns in disputes, aiding in targeted regulatory improvements by the Public Utilities Commission.

As Minnesota prepares to fill the ombudsperson position later this year with an initial budget of $150,000, stakeholders remain optimistic that this initiative will enhance collaboration between developers and utilities, ultimately accelerating the state’s transition towards cleaner energy solutions.

Click to comment
Subscribe
Notify of
guest
0 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

We’re dedicated to providing you the most authenticated news. We’re working to turn our passion for the political industry into a booming online news portal.

You May Also Like

Entertainment

Actress Emma D’Arcy is from the British rebellion. She has only appeared in a small number of movies and TV shows. It might be...

Entertainment

Jennifer Coolidge Is Pregnant: Jennifer Coolidge Audrey Coolidge is a comedian and actress from the United States. Many of her followers are wondering if...

News

Spoilers! The demon Akaza from Kimetsu no Yaiba dies in the eleventh arc of the manga and the one responsible for his death is...

Entertainment

The young YouTube star Emily Canham has recently been seen making headlines for her amazing work and her journey. She started from scratch and...