Visualizing Pathways to Decarbonization of the Midcontinent’s Electricity Sector

September 25, 2018 in Electricity, Reports & Whitepapers Author: Dane McFarlane

Transmission Line

The Great Plains Institute recently released A Road Map to Decarbonization in the Midcontinent Electricity Sector as part of its work with the Midcontinent Power Sector Collaborative, a diverse group of stakeholders including investor-owned utilities, merchant power companies, electric cooperatives, environmental groups, and state regulators.

The road map is the first-of-its-kind for any region in the US and was developed by the collaborative to provide utilities, policy makers, and stakeholders with a better sense of what will be needed to inform sound near-term decisions that position the region to meet the challenges ahead.

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“Smart” Charging Electric Vehicles with Solar at the Greenway Building

May 25, 2018 in Transportation & Fuels Authors: Dane McFarlane, Katelyn Bocklund, Matt Prorok

Electricity systems are increasingly becoming interactive and dynamic, opening up opportunities for energy technologies to “talk” to each other and create numerous benefits for energy consumers (e.g., increased efficiency, lower costs, and reduced emissions). This opportunity is one that GPI and our partners are exploring through the combination of electric vehicles (EVs) and solar energy.
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Analysis: Electric Vehicles Provide Even Greater GHG Reductions in 2017 and Beyond for the Upper Midwest

May 15, 2017 in Efficiency, Transportation & Fuels Author: Dane McFarlane

EV Vehicle Graphic

GPI recently updated our previous analysis to explore the emission reductions achieved by driving an electric vehicle (EV) in specific regions in the Midwest. The updated analysis affirms and strengthens our finding that driving EVs, in comparison to gasoline vehicles, can provide significant greenhouse gas emission (GHG) reductions, with increasing reductions expected in coming years for both Minnesota (the focus of our initial analysis) and the Upper Midwest.

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Analysis: Electric Vehicles Pay Their Fair Share in State Taxes

March 9, 2017 in Transportation & Fuels Author: Dane McFarlane

Recent tax policy analysis by the Great Plains Institute (GPI) for Drive Electric Minnesota found that electric cars pay just as much or more taxes as comparable gasoline vehicles. Like most other states, Minnesota uses a tax on the sale of gasoline and other motor fuel to pay for transportation infrastructure like highways and bridges, among other uses. Continue reading »

How Duluth’s New Mapping Tool Helps Predict Solar Energy Potential

February 8, 2017 in Electricity Authors: Brian Ross, Dane McFarlane

The City of Duluth, Minnesota recently launched a new web-based solar energy mapping tool for its residents and businesses that will help lower the barriers to solar development in the city. The app, called “Duluth Shines,” helps users evaluate their rooftop’s solar potential and estimate the size and cost of a solar installation. The tool is generating new interest in solar opportunities and has received coverage in local and regional news. Continue reading »

New Transmission to Expand Midwestern Wind Power

October 26, 2016 in Electricity Authors: Dane McFarlane, Matt Prorok

Wind Turbine

Note: This blog post contains three interactive maps and may take a moment to load

A set of new electric transmission lines, developed with the help of the Great Plains Institute, is under construction to connect more Midwestern wind power to large cities in the east. The Midcontinent Independent Systems Operator (MISO), which operates the electric grid in the Midwest, has been moving forward with the Multi-Value Project (MVP) portfolio since 2011. Continue reading »

New Transmission to Expand Midwestern Wind Power

February 16, 2016 in Electricity Authors: Dane McFarlane, Matt Prorok

Note: This blog post contains three interactive maps and may take a moment to load

A set of new electric transmission lines, developed with the help of the Great Plains Institute, is under construction to connect more Midwestern wind power to large cities in the east. The Midcontinent Independent Systems Operator (MISO), which operates the electric grid in the Midwest, has been moving forward with the Multi-Value Project (MVP) portfolio since 2011. Continue reading »