MNIPL solar programs: Vision + Action = Transformation
In our new era of political upheaval and economic disparity, the stakes of the climate crisis and the price of injustice are clear and on display every week. In this topsy-turvy arena, it is easy to lose heart, to flirt with despair. As people of faith, we draw strength from the wisdom of our traditions and the hope of community.
SOLAR PROGRAM ORGANIZING PRINCIPLES
That’s why we at MNIPL have grounded our solar programs in what we know to be true about the transition to a clean-energy economy:
Contributions from scientific and political realms are vital. However, climate change also is the most pressing moral and faith issue of our time.
The transition to a clean-energy economy is not some blue-sky future event; it is happening now. The movement, including a commitment to climate justice, becomes more powerful and gains more momentum every day.
Real change happens at the local level, neighborhood by neighborhood, faith community by faith community. There will be no magical top-down decree that sets everything right. We are the people we have been waiting for.
PRINCIPLES + ACTION
MNIPL recognizes that our organizing principles are merely pleasant abstractions if we do not back them with meaningful action. No movement has ever succeeded merely by being good enough and ethical enough. A vision without action is a retreat into private virtue.
That’s why MNIPL’s solar programs provide three concrete options for faith communities to take action, to model values-based leadership, and to inspire others on the path to a 100 percent renewable future. All three options are financially attractive. Many faith communities -- or even community members themselves who are interested in solar for their homes -- will benefit from models that require zero or minimal upfront investment to become a producer of solar energy.
Solar options for faith communities:
- Community Solar Gardens: MNIPL will partner with you to educate your faith organization about the promise of CSGs to democratize energy production, reduce energy poverty, and reduce your facility’s electricity bills. Learn more about Minnesota’s Community Solar Garden program, which was created in 2013.
On-site congregational solar: We'll work with your leadership team to take advantage of financial incentives that allow your church, synagogue, mosque, or faith community to cut electricity bills while also sending a powerful and lasting message about stewardship and justice. Learn more.
On-site residential solar: We’ll educate your community members about their options for residential solar, help them navigate the decision-making process, and select from installers that have been thoroughly vetted by MNIPL as like-minded, socially responsible organizations.
TRANSITION VS. TRANSFORMATION
MNIPL is not content simply to support the transition to a clean-energy economy. We also are intent on harnessing the opportunity that always accompanies a cultural shift to eliminate injustice and economic and racial disparities. We have joined a number of groups that share this powerful vision to form the Just Community Solar Coalition.
Coalition members are all committed to the goal of ensuring the transition that is underway reduces economic disparities rather than cementing them. More broadly, we believe four values are important if we are to achieve transformation beyond the transition.
That’s why MNIPL’s solar programs:
Are accessible to everyone, regardless of income or credit score
Build jobs in the local community
Protect natural resources
Tell a new story about what energy is and how it can be created and community-owned
Complete this form to begin exploring how your faith community can join MNIPL’s solar programs. We look forward to building a just climate movement together.