Letter: Good step towards clean energy

Published 5:21 pm Saturday, January 9, 2016

I am excited to hear that the new interpretive center in Austin will have solar energy and other sustainable practices. It sounds like the benefits of the new center will be well worth the upfront investment. As solar continues to grow in popularity it will become more affordable for our homeowners, businesses, and communities. The new interpretive center is a great step for Austin. The Jay C. Hormel Nature center and Park and Recreation board should be commended for their work on this.

Thankfully due to the extension of the federal solar investment tax credits, solar power can continue to grow here in Minnesota. The tax credit has been extended another five years, which will create solar jobs, help to reduce carbon pollution as coal plants are replaced, and it will boost our economy. This is a huge win for moving towards a 100 percent clean energy future.

According to an Environment Minnesota report, solar power capacity per person has grown 42 percent in Minnesota in the last two years. I am hopeful that with solar booming statewide, this statistic will continue to grow and Minnesota can move up in the state rankings for solar installed overall per state. We were last ranked at 29th overall. The work on solar in Austin, and across the state, will help us achieve this goal and move towards a cleaner energy future.

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Megan Spear,