MINNEAPOLIS – July 23, 2013 – Minneapolis Energy Options (MEO) and CenterPoint Energy announced today that they have entered into an agreement to collaborate on energy initiatives in the City of Minneapolis.
The Minneapolis Energy Options Campaign is working to address rising energy costs and moving toward a clean, affordable, reliable, local energy future.
“The Minneapolis Energy Options campaign applauds CenterPoint's leadership, by entering into this agreement to reduce their global warming impact, increase efficiency, and create a more sustainable and equitable future for the residents of Minneapolis,” remarked Dylan Kesti, campaign coordinator for the Minneapolis Energy Options campaign, which has pushed for a November ballot measure that would authorize the City of Minneapolis to explore establishing a municipal energy utilities in the city.
“With the announcement of today’s agreement, Minneapolis Energy Options feels that authorizing the formation of a city-owned gas utility is no longer necessary at this time. Minneapolis Energy Options is excited to see CenterPoint responding to Minneapolis residents’ grassroots leadership,” said Dylan Kesti. “We are thankful that they are ready to work with us for a cleaner, more affordable, reliable and local energy future in Minneapolis.”
CenterPoint Energy has committed to pursue the City of Minneapolis’ goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 30% by 2025 and to assist all of its customers in reducing their energy consumption and the associated greenhouse gas emissions.
“We are pleased to have found common ground with MEO,” said Joe Vortherms, division vice president of regional gas operations for CenterPoint Energy. “Our shared goal is to advance Minneapolis’ standing as a leading city on sustainability and energy conservation. We believe MEO’s focus on local and sustainable energy practices complements our Conservation Improvement Programs. Together, we can help the city reach its energy goals.”
CenterPoint Energy is the natural gas supplier to nearly 125,000 Minneapolis customers. Minneapolis Energy Options (MEO) is a coalition of organizations and neighbors working for a clean and affordable energy future. The agreement is intended to position Minneapolis as a leader in greenhouse gas reduction and energy efficiency that will save residents and businesses money.
The collaboration aims to help Minneapolis by:
- Jointly exploring opportunities to further expand CenterPoint Energy’s nationally recognized Conservation Improvement Programs (CIP) that help businesses and residential energy users save natural gas
- Affirming CenterPoint Energy’s commitment to helping the city achieve its goals, including carbon reduction, energy conservation, and sustainability, making this collaboration a powerful catalyst for furthering Minneapolis sustainability goals
- Considering new programs, such as expanding residential efficiency offerings, helping multifamily building owners save energy and furthering renewable energy technologies
- Supporting Minneapolis diversity in hiring programs that provide youth and adult work force training and commitment to supplier and other diversity programs
“CenterPoint Energy’s bold commitment to the city’s 30% by 2025 greenhouse gas reduction target is a watershed moment,” says John Farrell, Chair of Minneapolis Energy Options Steering Committee. “This is the first step in the utility’s effort to partner with the city to use local strategies for a cleaner, more affordable energy future.”
As a result of the agreement, CenterPoint Energy and MEO plan to communicate to Minneapolis City Council our mutual desire to exclude CenterPoint Energy’s natural gas distribution system from a referendum to explore municipalizing Minneapolis energy service at this time.
“We hope that Xcel will follow the example set by CenterPoint Energy, ” remarked Dylan Kesti. “ When energy corporations take responsibility for providing the clean, affordable energy service their customers want, we can find shared solutions to our mutual challenges.”
Minneapolis Energy Options is a coalition of organizations and neighbors interested in expanding energy options for the City of Lakes. We support more conservation and energy efficiency, local renewable energy and democratic control of our energy system.