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The spring 2008 CERTs Request for Proposals are now available! Are you looking for a source of funding to start a clean energy project in your county, community, or school? CERTs may be able to help!
The deadline for proposals is 4:30 pm April 18th, 2008; each CERT will meet before June 13th, 2008, to decide which projects to fund. Projects approved for funding must be completed by June 1, 2009.
To view the press release, visit:
To view the Request for Proposal, visit:
To view projects that were funded in winter of 2007, visit:
Article by: H.J. CUMMINS , Star Tribune
January 15, 2008
A legislator's plan to encourage small, local energy projects in Minnesota borrows from Germany's experience.
A Northfield legislator wants Minnesota to take a more European approach to renewable energy.
Rep. David Bly, DFL-Northfield, is expected to announce Thursday that he'll sponsor a bill to encourage local ownership of small energy projects. The measure would be a counterpoint to other tax incentives, including a federal production tax credit, that typically benefit large, corporate investors.
The proposed model, known as "feed-in tariffs," has worked in countries such as Germany, increasing both renewable-energy capacity and the role of small owners. Other states looking at feed-in tariffs include Michigan and California, although no state yet has such a program.
The proposal raises two issues likely to surface along with other renewable energy bills expected in the 2008 legislative session: What are the relative roles of government and the free market, and if clean energy costs more, who should pay that cost?....
"Local ownership urged for energy projects"
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With the Energy Bill being signed this week void of a national Renewable Energy Standard, many Americans are wondering how other policy can help support renewable energy development in rural America. One answer is the Rural Energy for America Program (REAP, previously called Section 9006 of the Farm Bill), which provides grants and loan guarantees to farmers, ranchers and rural, small businesses for renewable energy development and energy efficiency improvements.
Among the renewable energy provisions found in the Senate version of the farm bill is $260 million over five years for the Rural Energy for America Program. The 2002 Farm Bill, and REAP within it, is set to expire this year, but the House-Senate conference committee working on the bill hopes to extend the bill through March 15th, 2008 in order to provide continuous funding for the programs covered in the 2002 bill until agreements can be reached and passed.
The Minnesota Clean Energy Resource Teams (CERTs), via the University of Minnesota Regional Sustainable Development Partnerships (U of MN Regional Partnerships) and Southwest Regional Development Commission (SRDC), seek to provide limited financial assistance for energy efficiency and/or renewable energy projects requiring technical assistance.
Project funding can support technical assistance services (i.e., labor costs), such as consultant, design professional, installer or student labor, for projects in one of the following six Minnesota CERT regions: Central, Northeast, Northwest, Southeast, Southwest and West Central.
The primary objectives of this funding project are to:
- Encourage the implementation of community-based energy efficiency and renewable energy projects in CERT regions
- Provide a forum for community education about energy efficiency and renewable energy technologies and their economic, ecological and community benefits.
Funding for these projects is provided through: (1) the Minnesota Department of Commerce, (2) the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, and (3) the Blandin Foundation.
To be eligible for consideration for funding, each applicant must:
- Be located within one of the six greater Minnesota CERT regions: Central, Northeast, Northwest, Southeast, Southwest or West Central (www.cleanenergyresourceteams.org/map.html); and
- Seek funding for technical assistance support meaning labor costs, not hardware or material costs; and
- Must not be for work completed prior to award of project funding; and
- Demonstrate the committed resources, funding and ability to complete the project by December 31, 20084; and
- Demonstrate the ability and commitment to serve as a community-wide educational resource for renewable energy and energy efficiency.
Proposals MUST BE SUBMITTED ELECTRONICALLY BY 4:30 PM,
NOVEMBER 16th, 2007, to the contacts listed in the Attachment.
Selections will be made by each regional CERT by December 21st, 2007.
Award notification will be made by January 4th, 2008.
Projects must be completed, and final reports submitted, by December 31st, 2008.
Funds up to the grant amount will be reimbursed for eligible expenses upon project completion.
See the attached PDF for more information.
Minnesota Public Radio, has a number of online articles and resources about Wind and other Renewable Energy sources
Promising New Crop, by Jill K. Cliburn, Rural Electric, November 2004. A group of 46 farmers in south-central Minnesota hope wind turbines will improve the productivity of their fields; a G&T co-op will buy all 100 megawatts. Rural Electric is the magazine of the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association.