Distributed Generation (DG) solar is defined as mid-size installations between 1-10 megawatts. Distributed generation helps improve the resiliency of the electric grid, provides an opportunity for solar development on marginal land, and offers utilities a better price per megawatt of solar. The Minnesota Public Utilities Commission (MPUC) created the DG tariff in 2004 but no facility has adopted it yet.

MnSEIA seeks to persuade the MPUC to take up the DG tariff docket in 2022 and reform the proposed tariff to encourage growth in this promising market. We aim to:

  • Increase the current DG Tariff rate. Currently, it does not reflect all of the benefits that DG solar provides to the electric distribution system of utilities.
  • Introduce a contract term length. Solar projects typically have these to create certainty for developers and project owners. For example, community solar garden contracts are valid for 25 years.

In 2018 MnSEIA, alongside our partners, pushed for the MPUC to re-evaluate the DG tariff framework. The MPUC agreed, MnSEIA introduced comments, and we are currently awaiting a full hearing on the issue.

MnSEIA believes this regulatory work represents an opportunity to revise these outdated tariffs and open a whole new market in Minnesota.