Letter: Integrating solar power

To the editor:

Recent newspaper stories describe plans for large-scale solar fields built by Xcel and proposed community solar gardens built by entrepreneurs. The political, technical, and legal “climates” are such that it is a good time to work toward integrating solar power into the Roseville community. Consequently, last week, a small group of interested residents and City officials met to learn about the current state of affairs, with interest in starting to explore solar possibilities for Roseville.

A land use, energy and sustainability consultant addressed the group to emphasize the critical role local government plays in facilitating solar energy installations. Information was presented on the critical attributes of “solar ready” communities, including solar resource identification and preservation, and the importance of solar-specific planning, code, and permitting procedures.

Beth Mercer-Taylor, Falcon Heights City Council, described the economic and environmental benefits Falcon Heights will derive from recent installation of solar energy panels on City Hall.

Discussion focused on the need to educate Roseville City Council, City staff, school board and community members on economic and environmental issues driving solar energy projects for Roseville. Considerable interest was expressed in community solar gardens.

A community workshop about solar possibilities for Roseville (residential, commercial, community solar) is being planned for the future. Anyone interested in attending this meeting should send email to Rosevillesolar@gmail.com for details.

Letters urging attention to these issues should be sent to Roseville City Council and ISD623 school board members.

Sarah Barsel


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