Minnesota Solar Electric Installations Gains Strong Growth

By KBJR News 1

Minnesota Solar Electric Installations Gains Strong Growth

January 15, 2013 Updated Jan 15, 2013 at 11:01 AM CDT

St. Paul, MN (NNCNOW.com) -- New Minnesota solar electric installations in 2012 nearly tripled compared to 2011, officials say.

The figures were compiled by the Minnesota Department of Commerce, Division of Energy Resources.

In 2012, 299 solar electric, or solar photovoltaic, systems with a capacity of 4,844 kilowatts were installed in businesses, homes and nonprofit organizations.

The 299 systems were the most since 2010 and greatly exceeded the 164 installations in 2011.

One of the largest factors in the increase was the installation of the new solar array at the Ikea store in Bloomington.

"Solar is gaining a better role in Minnesota's clean energy economy," said Commerce Commissioner Mike Rothman. "We are working hard with utilities and others to ensure that we incorporate solar energy into out portfolio of renewable energy resources. While solar power still represents a very small portion of the total electric power in Minnesota, solar in Minnesota continues to make substantial progress and will continue to do so as it becomes more and more affordable."

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