A bill that would require Minnesota’s utilities to generate 100 percent clean energy by 2040 passed in the House and is expected to be signed into law in the coming weeks. The legislation garnered wide support from environmental advocacy groups, who succeeded in pushing some provisions in favor of communities disproportionately burdened by environmental hazards—but some argue that the bill still isn’t attentive enough to environmental justice concerns.

The bill outlines a route to fully decarbonize the electric grid over the next 17 years and establishes benchmarks until the goal is reached. Utilities can purchase renewable energy credits to offset carbon emissions if they generate more carbon than the standard allows. It would also streamline permitting for renewable energy projects, define what qualifies as renewable energy and require paying the state’s prevailing wage to workers who construct or repower large electric plants.

The bill has passed in the Democratic-led House twice before but never made it through the Republican-led Senate. Now, political power in the state has shifted, with new Democratic control of the Senate and a continued hold on the governor’s office. While environmental advocacy groups have rallied behind House File 7 and Senate File 4, some say it falls short on environmental justice.

To read the full story, visit https://insideclimatenews.org/news/30012023/minnesota-clean-energy-bill-incinerators/.
Author: Aydali Campa, Inside Climate News