Keep Minnesota’s energy options open


Energy costs are rising in Minneapolis, which means we have to pay more for our electric and gas utilities. Currently, we pay Xcel Energy and CenterPoint Energy to import energy using fossil fuels, which works against Minneapolis’ goals to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. However, Minneapolis Energy Options is campaigning to keep our energy options open and is working to invest in a clean energy future.

We are currently at the mercy of Xcel Energy and CenterPoint Energy because Minneapolis is locked into 20-year contracts with each company. Fortunately, we have a once-in-a-generation opportunity to change this. The contracts with Xcel Energy and CenterPoint Energy expire in early 2014 and 2015, respectively. We are on the verge of having a great opportunity to promote the local economy through clean energy. The Minnesota Public Interest Research Group’s Environment Task Force is working to build support for a potential ballot initiative to give the city the authority to create an energy utility if it can prove to provide cleaner, affordable, local and reliable energy.

Before we sign on to another 20 years of investing in polluting energy and increased rates, we should explore all of the options available when deciding our energy future. MPIRG is working with this campaign to urge the Minneapolis City Council to keep our options open. As we move forward, we need to ensure Minneapolis continues to promote clean energy and move toward our climate action goals.