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CERTs Receives $1.25 Million to Continue Supporting Minnesota Communities

May 8, 2009

Shutterstock St. Paul, MN — On May 7, 2009 Governor Pawlenty signed the Environment Budget bill, which includes $1.25 million over the biennium for the Clean Energy Resource Teams (CERTs) program. This funding will enable CERTs to assist local groups in developing project ideas, finding technical and financial resources, and organizing and implementing energy efficiency and clean energy projects in their communities. The Minnesota Project was instrumental in the creation of CERTs and coordinates the partnership’s conference, communications, and Web efforts.

Over the past six years CERTs has worked to build a statewide infrastructure of team members committed to making energy efficiency and clean energy projects happen in their homes, schools, businesses, and communities. This network will continue to be critical to mobilize communities across the state to implement projects that create jobs and help Minnesota reach its energy efficiency and renewable energy goals.

CERT staff are currently developing strategies to help team members and their communities achieve over 9,000,000 kWh savings in the next two years—which, at 8 cents/kWh, could result in savings of up to $720,000. These energy efficiency and conservation projects have near-term results and demonstrate early successes. These projects also allow community members, schools, local governments, businesses, civic groups and congregations to see themselves as energy efficiency and clean energy leaders in their communities and allies of their local utility.

The CERTs approach to mobilizing community members to impact their own communities democratizes the energy system, broadens the network of individuals and groups working to achieve state goals, and ensures that the benefits of this new energy economy are distributed across the entire state. This funding of $1.25 million over the next biennium will help CERTs to continue this important work.

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