University of Minnesota
University of Minnesota
Energy Transition Lab

Future arrives in Minnesota as electric cooperative unveils battery project

December 11, 2018Andrew ButtsNewsComments Off on Future arrives in Minnesota as electric cooperative unveils battery project

A local Minnesota initiative led by Connexus, an electric cooperative, could make Minnesota a trailblazer in the nation’s current renewable energy transition. Oct. 26, 2018 marked the unveiling of the Connexus initiative in Minnesota to create the state’s first large-scale solar-plus battery storage project. This project, unlike anything produced in the country yet, will set the tone for what energy storage is capable of. A key current project of ETL, investigating the costs and benefits of co-locating solar generation with pollinator habitat, was made possible through a generous grant by Connexus. To read more about the history leading to this solar-plus-storage project and the Connexus initiative click here.

“It’s no doubt that storage is a disruptor,” Ridderbusch said. Some see giant battery systems that store renewable electricity akin to cell phones or digital cameras — they change the world. And they could definitely change the way electric cooperatives work, said Duane Ninneman, executive director of Clean Up the River Environment. “They could leapfrog from an innovation point of view and actually put those member-owners to work in being generators themselves.”

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