The Clean Energy Community Awards are an acknowledgment of the work done by Minnesota communities to further the state’s clean energy goals by implementing programs, policies, and technologies that encourage energy efficiency, conservation, and renewable energy generation. The awards program is sponsored by the Minnesota Commerce Department.
Communities can consist of any group united in implementing clean energy goals. Units of government (city, county, tribal nation, or other jurisdiction) must be among the participating members, but nonprofits, service organizations, and businesses will strengthen the application.
Programs from the Possible Initiatives list will be given high priority by evaluators.
Programs must be in operation during the last 12 months.
Applications will be considered from throughout the state, regardless of population or geographic location.
Successful Clean Energy Community applicants will have implemented initiatives that satisfy a majority (or demonstrate intense efforts in one or more) of the following criteria:
Policy development, such as incorporation of energy goals in a community’s Comprehensive, Sustainability, Zoning, or Climate Action Plans that provide measurable clean energy achievements in public buildings/infrastructure and/or private businesses/ residences.
Community partnerships and stakeholder education with local business/industry/agriculture, nonprofits, utilities, or residents to meet energy goals.
Expansion of energy efficiency and/or renewable energy opportunities to historically underserved communities.
Innovation that is replicable by Minnesota communities and that serves to advance Minnesota’s clean energy goals.
Applicant communities will be invited to attend an event at the Eco Experience at the Minnesota State Fair, where award finalists will be announced.
Finalist communities (up to 10) will have their initiatives featured as part of an exhibit at the Eco Experience. Additionally, they will receive admission tickets to the Fair to attend the announcement event.
Award recipient communities (up to 5) will receive:
A stipend to send community members to attend a celebratory event and press conference during Energy Awareness Month in October.
Statewide media coverage including press packets for distribution to local media outlets.
Achievement Award and signage suitable for public display.