Solar energy harnesses the sun’s energy to generate electricity. It is an abundant and important renewable energy source that can be captured and used in several ways.
The City of Minnetonka is fully subscribed to receive solar energy from Xcel Energy’s community solar gardens. Minnetonka is one of a few cities in the state – and the entire country – fully subscribed to solar gardens.
Numerous options exist for residents and businesses who wish to explore solar energy or other renewable energy options.
The city participates in Xcel Energy’s community solar garden program. All city buildings, street lights and water systems are fully subscribed to receive solar energy from community solar gardens, which reduces the city’s carbon footprint and has significant cost savings. Minnetonka is one of a few cities in the state – and the entire country – fully subscribed to solar gardens.
- The amount of energy the city receives from its solar garden subscriptions is comparable to planting 800 trees or removing 700 cars from the road each year
- More than 350,000 gallons of gas or 8,500 barrels of oil would be required annually to generate the same amount of energy.
- Minnetonka’s commitment to solar is projected to save approximately $500,000 per year, or $12.5 million over a 25-year period.
- The city’s only cost to subscribe to Xcel Energy's community solar gardens is $18,000 per year for energy consultants who develop and track the solar garden contracts for the city.
Sol Smart partnership
The city is working with with Sol Smart, a national organization that provides no-cost technical assistance to help cities and other government organizations make it faster, easier and more affordable to go solar.
Visit our Sustainable Minnetonka page to learn about the city's many sustainability initiatives.
Are you interested in renewable energy in your home? The answers to these frequently asked questions can help connect you with the right options, programs and companies. Email us to learn more or ask questions.
What renewable energy options are available?
- View this helpful chart from Clean Energy Resource Teams to learn more about renewable energy options available for Xcel Energy customers, including installing your own solar panels, joining a community solar garden and more.
Will solar panels work on my property?
- Use the Minnesota Solar Suitability Analysis App or Google Project Sunroof to determine if solar panels will work effectively on your property.
How can I find a solar business?
- Use the Clean Energy Project Builder to find energy businesses including solar installers, community solar garden developers, energy auditors and more.
- Before contacting a solar business, review the state’s solar questions and consumer tips.
What city permits will I need to install a solar energy system?
- Review our solar checklist.
- Complete this application and include with your online permit application.
What is a community solar garden and how can I find one?
- Visit Clean Energy Resource Team’s website to learn about community solar gardens.
- Check out Xcel Energy’s list of solar garden operators. View Minnesota solar gardens under “Step 2: Contacting a Solar Garden Operator.”
- In Minnesota, you must live in the county or an adjacent county to subscribe to a community solar garden.
What other renewable energy options are available?
- Visit Xcel Energy’s website to learn more about residential renewable energy options.