Following a stakeholder engagement process facilitated by the Great Plains Institute in 2018, Xcel Energy received approval and is moving forward in Minnesota with new electric vehicle (EV) pilot programs.
As investor-owned electric utilities seek to meet the needs of shareholders, consumers, and the environment, EVs offer a unique opportunity. If implemented carefully, utility investments in EV infrastructure and programs can provide a series of benefits, including new sources of utility revenue, better services for EV drivers, reduced costs for all consumers by making the electric system more efficient, and reduced pollution and greenhouse gas emissions. Continue reading »
As 2019 comes to a close, we are met with the stark realization that the new year marks the beginning of the most important juncture in the history of our climate, planet, and civilization. The 2020s will define the future of both humanity and planet Earth as our society must take profound action to confront the climate crisis or the world that we have known—both natural and economic—will change drastically. Continue reading »
Community-scale readiness is critical to the successful development of the Midwest’s abundant solar and wind energy resources. As utility-scale wind and solar development increases in the Midwest, communities should consider how renewable energy development aligns with local goals and values. A series of proactive actions can ensure that the way utility-scale renewables develop in a community is in line with community vision, reduces potential conflict, and optimizes co-benefits. Continue reading »
Game-changing technology that models the lowest-cost, best placement, and most effective use of carbon capture, transport, and storage has earned a prestigious research and development award. A technology that happens to be at the heart of GPI’s work on carbon capture for the past few years. Continue reading »
On occasion, Great Plains Institute (GPI) staff like to venture into the world of pop culture, especially when that pop culture has to do with our favorite topic—energy. Some GPI staff attended the recent film The Current War, which dives into the origins of our modern electric grid system and the inventors, investors, and engineers that made it happen. Two of our staff members shared some thoughts about that battle over who would create the modern electric grid and the critical work ahead to transform the grid for a low-carbon future.
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GPI is pleased to welcome Jessie Stolark as our new public policy and member relations manager. Jessie will support the Carbon Capture Coalition which is convened by GPI and brings together 70-plus members from industry, labor, and NGOs to advance carbon capture policies and commercial deployment. Continue reading »
A pollinator test plot underneath the PV array at the Chisago Solar Site, part of the Aurora Solar Project in Minnesota. NREL scientist Jordan Macknick is researching the economical and ecological affect of pollinator plants planted underneath the PV array
Solar projects can be designed and sited to meet natural resource conservation goals. Capturing the natural resource co-benefit opportunities of solar development will involve creative partnerships, targeted spatial planning, and rethinking site and project design. Continue reading »
What will the energy system look like in 50 years? What trends are in play today that should inform business strategy, with an eye toward a long-term vision for the future? Those are the questions that I tackled in a presentation earlier this year to hundreds of top executives from Royal Vopak, a 400-year-old global tank storage company based in the Netherlands. Continue reading »
Representatives of US industry, labor unions, state and federal officials, environmental and clean energy NGOs, and philanthropy joined the Great Plains Institute (GPI) in September 2019 on an American public and private delegation to the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Belgium, and the Netherlands to explore carbon capture in steel production and see leading commercial-scale examples overseas of carbon capture and utilization projects in operation and under construction. Continue reading »
If you are an avid reader of the Great Plains Institute (GPI) blog and newsletter you probably have a pretty good sense of what GPI does. What you might not know is the role that you can personally play in making a zero-carbon energy system happen. Continue reading »