Brooklyn Park Completes Minnesota’s Largest City Solar Project
Minnesota Governor Tim Walz, Congressman Dean Phillips and other politicians were in Brooklyn Park Monday, promoting what officials say is the largest solar project ever for a Minnesota city.
“It not only makes sense environmentally, it also makes sense fiscally. And that’s the kind of project we can get behind,” said Brooklyn Park Mayor Jeff Lunde.
The city’s solar project will generate enough power for 100 percent of its energy needs in buildings across the city.
“It will generate about 1.8 megawatts which is the equivalent of about 200 houses,” Lunde said.
“We spent nothing”
Officials say the $2.6 million project won’t cost taxpayers a penny.
“We spent nothing,” Lunde said.
The solar project was funded through a public-private partnership. Brooklyn Park received a Minnesota solar grant, federal tax credits and money from private investors.
“We reduce carbon emissions,” said Governor Tim Walz. “This is a win, win, win and this has nothing to do with ideology. It has a everything to do with economics and science.”
Brooklyn Park’s Solar Blueprint
Brooklyn Park’s solar blueprint could be a template for other cities in Minnesota and around the nation to copy.
“It takes someone to take the lead and be the innovator,” said U.S. Rep. Dean Phillips, who represents Brooklyn Park in the Third Congressional District. “That’s why I salute Mayor Lunde and the entire city of Brooklyn Park for doing so. That’s going to inspire other cities, both smaller ones and larger ones.”
Despite these polarized times, elected officials say there should be no political boundaries when it comes to solar power.
“If you look around the country some of the most progressive states relative to renewable energy are deep red states,” Phillips said. “So this notion that it’s political is actually part of the problem. We have to de-politicize it.”
“You don’t have to choose anymore between carbon reductions and cost savings,” Walz said. “You can have both.
Brooklyn Park officials say solar energy will save taxpayers $60,000 in electricity in 2020 and $5.5 million in a 25-year span.