A major contributor to climate change is greenhouse gas emissions from the generation of electricity. While the electric grid in Minnesota continues to get cleaner, it remains important for local governments to understand energy consumption in their communities.
The City is working to reduce energy consumption and costs and increase renewable energy in its buildings, campuses, and operations. Recent actions include:
- benchmarking energy use and completing energy efficiency projects in City buildings
- replacing indoor and outdoor lighting with LEDs
- installing an EV charging station at City Hall, with one planned at Brookview in 2021
- installing four 40-kilowatt solar arrays on City buildings through a Power Purchase Agreement (each array produces an average of 38,890 kWh annually for a total of approximately 55,560 kWh coming from City solar, which is equal to about 10 percent of the energy consumed by the City each year)
- achieving bronze certification in the Department of Energy's Solsmart program
- developing a Green Building Guide for residential construction and remodeling projects
Switch to an Electric Vehicle
In October 2018, one of Golden Valley's first electric vehicle (EV) charging stations was installed in the water tower west parking lot, near McDonald's, on the City Hall campus, and in 2021, a charging station was installed at Brookview. The charging station by ChargePoint is a part of the world's largest and most open EV charging network, with more than 50,000 charging stations worldwide and more than 300 in the Minneapolis area.
Charging at a ChargePoint station is similar to pumping at a gas station, except the payment is done through a mobile app or the ChargePoint card for a simpler and quicker transaction. Users are charged 90 cents per hour for the first three hours $1.20 per hour after three hours.
For more information about the ChargePoint EV charger, contact the City of Golden Valley Physical Development Department at 763-595-8030 or visit the ChargePoint website.
Energy Efficient Buildings
The City of Golden Valley has developed a Green Building Guide in hopes of encouraging residents to choose 'greener' options when performing home improvement projects. Green building is a process that reduces and/or eliminates negative environmental impacts over the course of a building's life-cycle.
From design and construction to maintenance and renovation, this Golden Valley-specific guide will be designed for residents and local builders. It will include a comprehensive list of guidelines and resources intended for new building projects as well as smaller retrofit or renovation projects.
Paper copies can be made available by calling the Golden Valley Engineering division at 763-593-8030.
Solar contractors will be able to provide a cost estimate for your project. Make it affordable by using the following resources:
- Federal Tax Credit: If you installed a solar system in 2020-2022, you get a 26 percent Residential Renewable Energy Tax Credit. The incentive allows you to claim a 26 percent credit on your federal tax return for the costs of the system. Projects must be installed by Dec. 31, 2022.
- Xcel Energy’s Solar*Rewards®: Solar*Rewards is an incentivized program from Xcel Energy where annual payments are made to the owner of the solar system in exchange for Renewable Energy Credits for the energy produced by the solar system.
- Solar Financing: Up to $50,000 is available to help you pay for your solar system and there are no income limits.
- Database of State Incentives for Renewables & Efficiency (DSIREUSA): This database provides a complete list of financial incentives for solar systems from utility, state, county, and federal sources. Select your contractor and install your system.
PIE provides services to communities to develop an energy plan and assist with implementing that plan. Each community has its own unique energy needs and priorities, and Partners in Energy tailors its services to complement each community's vision.
Energy Action Plan Update
The City’s Energy Action Team recently published a first six months (July–Dec 2021) progress update of the plan to share how Golden Valley has made strides in becoming a more environmentally friendly place. View document here.