MNIPL Monthly Newsletter

Each month, we share a newsletter including concrete, actionable ways for you to take powerful action and opportunities to inspire and sustain our movement over the long haul. Click here to receive these monthly action alerts!
Read on for this month's newsletter:

Minnesota Interfaith Power & Light


Dear friends,

Across the country, the movement for climate justice is gaining momentum. Earlier today, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez unveiled a bold plan to fight climate change and invest in an equitable clean energy economy with a #GreenNewDeal.

On Monday, Minnesota will become the first state in the country to launch Green New Deal legislation. We hope you’ll join youth from across Minnesota at the state capitol for this exciting announcement.

This comes on the heels of a powerful event earlier this week for 100% equitable, clean energy in Minnesota. More than 300 Minnesotans met with legislators, and a 100% clean energy bill was introduced. We invite you and your faith community to engage and share your story with legislators. Read on for details and opportunities to get involved:


News & Updates


Faith Communities for 100% Renewable Energy

MNIPL is proud to be among dozens of community organizations, unions, and advocacy groups pushing for 100% clean energy in Minnesota. In this 2019 legislative session, we expect more than one 100% clean energy bill will be introduced. Let’s bring a clear interfaith message to our legislators. Sign the interfaith petition for 100% renewable energy and meet with your local legislators (contact [email protected] to coordinate). Read our blog post on more ways to get involved.

Solar Project Live at Many Rivers Montessori!

Many Rivers Montessori in Duluth is thrilled to have its new solar array up and running! The 64-panel rooftop system (20kW) was mounted on the school’s new building over the fall. Initially, Many Rivers Montessori reached out to MNIPL’s Bret Pence, who helped the school bring together the resources needed to complete the work. Learn more

Friday: Join our Interfaith Action to Stop Line 3

Friday, February 8th, 11:30am-1:30pm
Governor Walz’s Office, State Capitol, St. Paul
Join us as people of faith in spiritually grounded action in solidarity with Indigenous Water Protectors at Governor Walz’s office. We will be holding sacred space and showing our care for our Earth, our water, and our communities. We invite you to come practice your spiritual tradition through prayerful protest, meditation, and sacred rituals to send our moral message: Water is Life / Stop Line 3. RSVP here

This weekend: Be the Spark Leadership Training

February 10th & March 3rd at 2:00 - 7:00 pm each session
At St. Mary’s Episcopal Church, St Paul, MN
Be the Spark teaches tools and practices for how to build positive, creative, and committed teams to fuel energized action on climate. Over 2 sessions sessions you’ll build premier organizing skills and learn strategic approaches for engaging your faith community in Climate Change solutions. Sunday. Refreshments and Dinner provided. Register here


Monday: Join youth to launch the Minnesota Green New Deal

February 11 @ 3:30 pm - 5:30 pm [Rescheduled from January 31st]
75 Rev Dr Martin Luther King Jr Blvd
Join youth of Minnesota as we introduce a Minnesota Green New Deal bill to address the urgency and scale of the climate crisis by: eliminating greenhouse gas emissions by 2030, investing in communities on the frontlines of poverty and pollution, and building a more sustainable economy with thousands of green new jobs. Learn more


Announcing the Ed Owens Peoples’ Movement Assembly

Saturday, March 9th @ 12:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Metro State University, 700 7th St E, St Paul
Join the Just Solar Coalition, NAACP and Restore the Vote to build the movement for solutions that combat systemic oppression and advance a just transition to renewable energy. We will honor the work of the late Ed Owens to support his community and promote climate justice. Learn more


Save the Date: MNIPL Climate Justice Night at the Museum

Thursday, March 28 @ 6:00 – 8:30 pm
Bell Museum, 2088 Larpenteur Ave W, St Paul
$45 early bird rate (by Feb 28) // $55 regular ticket
Join us for a night of celebration at the new Bell Museum of Natural History to support the MNIPL network and our bold vision for a just, sustainable world. Gather for a buffet-style meal in the beautiful Horizon Hall, and view the museum's special Weather & Climate exhibit. Together we’ll share music, poetry, and stories of visionary projects at the intersection of carbon reduction and social justice. Get early bird tickets / host a table

MNIPL is in the Classroom this semester!

Interested in going back to school? We’d love to have you join us as a special guest in a course we have designed at the University of Minnesota, The Global Climate Challenge: Creating and Empowered Movement For Change. Board Member Teddie Potter and Executive Director Julia Nerbonne have teamed up with Soil Scientist and MNIPL Community Connector Jessica Gutknecht to create an action oriented course that sets the stage for students to create and implement action campaigns. Tuesdays from 3:45 to 6:30 in Brunicks Hall on the east bank. Email [email protected] to learn more.

Op-ed: Electoral Justice for Climate

by MNIPL Policy Team member Mark Bohnhorst
Long time solar volunteer and Policy Team member Mark Bohnhorst recently wrote a story for the MNIPL sacred action blog, reflecting on climate justice and the need to end the electoral collage. Read Mark's full essay.

Twin Cities Metro Events

Interfaith Climate Lobbying Webinar
Weds, Feb. 20th, 7:30-8:30pm
Online or at 3015 27th Ave S, Minneapolis
Do you want to arrange an in-district meeting with your legislator to talk with them about climate priorities? Join us in person or online to learn more about reaching out to elected officials, featuring Representative Jaime Long, Rev. Sarah Campbell of Mayflower UCC, and youth from Minnesota Can’t Wait.

Feb 24th: Cross Country Ski Event to Protect Water w/ Bill McKibben
Sunday, February 24th, 10am-6pm
Itasca State Park
On Feb 24th, public is invited to participate in the growing citizens’ movement opposing the Enbridge Line 3 tar sands pipeline. Join Honor the Earth for the first ever ‘Ski the Line’ event, a 15-mile cross-country ski trip will begin at Itasca State Park and follow the proposed pipeline route. Featuring Winona LaDuke and Bill McKibben, author & co-founder of Appropriate for all amateur skiers. To coordinating rides and an overnight stay near Lake Itasca on the 23rd, contact [email protected]. Facebook event here.

Environmental Ancestry Storytelling Workshop
Saturday, March 23 @ 11:00 am - 5:00 pm
Gandhi Mahal Restaurant, 3009 27th Ave S, Minneapolis
Hosted by cultural artists Ifrah Mansour & Louis Alemayehu. The Environmental Ancestry Storytelling Project brings communities together to discover our environmental ancestry stories, how this informs and empowers us in the present, and what our collective action will be – rooted in justice, place and the land. RSVP here.

Tell the Minneapolis City Council: Support Climate Policy
Monday, February 11th @ 1:30 - 3:30 pm
Minneapolis City Hall, Room 317
Minneapolis residents deserve to understand how much their utility bills will cost as they choose where to live. A new policy called the “Resident Energy Disclosure” would require landlords to disclose building energy ratings – a policy that is also key for meeting the City’s Climate Action Plan goals. Monday, Feb. 11th is the sole opportunity for members of the public to address the City Council in person about these policies. Join us! Folks can also share their thoughts with Council members via email.

Presidential Elections: Electoral College or National Popular Vote
Monday, February 11, 2019 @ 7-9pm
1785 Northwestern Ave, Stillwater, MN
Join us for a presentation and vigorous discussion of the system for electing the president with MNIPL Policy Team member Mark Bohnhorst  and the Stillwater Critical Thinking Club. Explore flaws in the current Electoral College system, opportunities for change, objections to proposed changes, and implications for the 2020 election and beyond. Read a reflection by Mark on the MNIPL Sacred Action Blog here.

#MMIW: Missing and Murdered Indigenous Peoples’ March
AIC, Thursday, February 14, 2019 @ 11am - 2pm
1530 E Franklin Ave, Minneapolis, MN
As sacred water carriers, women are life givers, as is water. Please join and help bring the needed visibility & awareness to the growing epidemic of Missing & Murdered Indigenous Women, Girls, Boys, Two Spirit and Transgender Relatives. Wear red – bring banners, posters, staffs, drums, rattles. Facebook event

Youth Climate Justice Summit
Wednesday, February 21st, 8:30am - 3:00pm
Minnesota State Capitol, St Paul
Join us for a day at the Capitol! The Youth Climate Justice Summit is a chance for youth to experience first-hand how to participate in government. Meet with Governor Walz and legislators to let them know why you care about climate change and social justice. It is also a chance to connect with youth from across Minnesota. The majority of youth who attend are in high school, although middle schoolers and college students are invited as well. RSVP

Saving Snow
documentary screening
Friday February 22, 7:00 PM
Unity Unitarian
Join Unity Unitarian for a showing of Saving Snow, a documentary explores the impact of climate change on people who depend on winter for their livelihoods. Here in Minnesota, it is major ski races like the Birkebeiner and City of Lakes Loppet, as well as businesses shoveling and plowing snow. Moderator Steve Jorrisen, a PhD physical scientist, will talk about local impacts happening now as well as actions we can all engage in.

Climate Justice Congregation Program
MNIPL is excited to announce a new congregational certificate program, Be the Spark: Climate Justice Congregations. This year-long process will help you and your community gain focus, support, and recognition to galvanize your faith community into committed climate action. The program is open to any faith community that is interested in deepening engagement for climate justice.


Northern MN Events

Energy presentation by Bret Pence
Monday, February 4th @ 9:00 - 10:00 am
UMD University for Seniors at UMD

Solar House Party, Geoff Witrik’s home
Tuesday, February 5th @ 7:00 - 8:30 pm
2223 S. Lake Ave., Duluth
Rescheduled due a frigid week previously!  A gathering to introduce interested parties to our 2019 Duluth solar group buy with partners RREAL and Ecolibrium3. Come learn about solar and energy efficiency from experts in a solar home! Contact Bret for more information.

Congregations Caring for the Earth monthly meeting
Tuesday, February 12th @ 2:30 pm
Virginia, MN
A coalition of Iron Range faith communities that work together toward a common vision of caring for creation. RSVP to Bret or Kristin Foster ([email protected]) for more information.

Itasca Clean Energy Team monthly meeting
Wednesday, February 13th @ 1:00 - 2:00 pm
Grand Rapids, MN
A coalition of Grand Rapids area citizens and civic leaders that are working with their municipal utility toward the vision of a community solar garden.  RSVP to Bret or William Schnell ([email protected]) for more information.

Earth Harmony Interfaith Study Group
Thursday, February 14th @ 9:00 - 11:00 am
AICHO, 202 W 2nd St, Duluth
An ongoing discussion group with with Pastor David Carlson that explores spiritual perspectives and human response within the framework of ecological crisis. We invite hopeful reflection and collaboration, this time with a special presentation and tour of the American Indian Community Housing Organization building.

Breakfast at 9:00am, at 9:30 a review the book Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge, and the Teachings of Plants by Robin Wall Kimmerer.  Presentation by LeAnn Littlewolf, Economic Development Director, about the perspective of economic development utilized by AICHO, followed at 10:30 am by a short tour of their facility.  RSVP necessary for this event. Contact David Carlson ([email protected]) or Bret Pence ([email protected]) for questions or to RSVP.

Environmental Ancestry Storytelling Workshop
Saturday, February 16 @ 11:00 am - 5:00 pm
MacRostie Art Center, 405 1st Ave NW, Grand Rapids MN
The Environmental Ancestry Storytelling Project brings communities together to discover our environmental ancestry stories, how this informs and empowers us in the present, and what our collective action will be – rooted in justice, place and the land. Hosted by cultural artist Leah Lemm. RSVP here

Duluth Climate and Energy Network monthly meeting
Tuesday, February 19th, 9:00 - 10:30 am
Ecolibrium3, Duluth
An informal coalition of environmental and social justice groups that coordinate together, and with state-wide actors, to work towards a more sustainable Duluth. RSVP to Bret if you are interested in attending.

Ski the Lin
e - A Cross Country Ski Event to Stop Line 3
Sunday, February 24th, 10am-6pm
On Feb 24th, public is invited to participate in the growing citizens’ movement opposing the Enbridge Line 3 tar sands pipeline. Join Honor the Earth for the first ever ‘Ski the Line’ event, a 15-mile cross-country ski trip will begin at Itasca State Park and follow the proposed pipeline route. Appropriate for all amateur skiers. To coordinating rides and an overnight stay near Lake Itasca on the 23rd, contact [email protected]. Facebook event here.

MNIPL Monthly Meeting, Northern Minnesota
Tuesday, February 26th, 6:30-8pm
Location TBA

Talk Climate Institute
March 25-26, 2019
American Indian Community Housing Organization (AICHO), Duluth, MN
Registration: Sliding scale of $75-$100, Scholarships Available
Join Climate Generation for a two-day engaging workshop to learn new ways to have conversations about climate change that build respect and understanding. Participate in interactive sessions that incorporate reflective writing and listening, activities, visual art, and storytelling. Register here


Southern MN Events

“Know Your Energy Rights” - A Spanish Language Event
Saturday, February 2nd from 1:30-3:30pm
Greenvale Park Elementary School, Northfield, MN
Join MNIPL and experts in the energy industry to learn about interpreting your energy bill, how to save money on your energy bills, local community solar garden options, and supporting diversity and equity in the clean energy movement. Bring a copy of your energy bill with you to receive a free consultation!

The Big Chemistry Experiment: A Scientific Review of Climate Change and Its Possible Impact on SE Minnesota
Tuesday, Feb. 5th, 7:00 - 8:00 PM
First Congregational Church/UCC, 161 W. Broadway, Winona
Please join us for a thought-provoking presentation on the science of climate change and its impact on our region and the world. Dr. Chuck Shepard, a local physician, brings years of experience with scientific research as well as his love of nature to “tell it like it is.” Winona CAN (Climate Action Network) will then lead a discussion. For more information, call 507-452-4829.

Recent developments in energy and agriculture
Friday, February 8th, 9:00 - 11:00 am
South Central Service Cooperative, 2075 Lookout Drive, North Mankato
The forum will address one or more of the following themes: 1) production of renewables from corn and soybeans, 2) communities of practice improvement, and 3) positive externalities / options and opportunities. All Southcentral Minnesota Clean Energy Council monthly forums are free and open to the public.

“Power of Minnesota” screening - Frozen River Film Festival
Saturday, February 9th, 6:00 pm
Winona State University (WSU) Performing Arts Center, Black Box Theatre
Join us for a film screening and community conversation on the new documentary “The Power of Minnesota.” The film features stories about families, communities, schools, and businesses that are driving a transition to clean energy. You’ll also receive a free LED light bulb, and learn how you can take action on your own projects! Presenters include representatives from MNIPL and the City of Winona.

River Prairie Network Monthly Meeting
Wednesday, February 20th 1:30 pm
Trinity Lutheran Church, St. Peter
Monthly gathering of St. Peter faith communities working toward a common vision of caring for creation and promoting sustainability in St. Peter. Contact [email protected] if interested in attending.


Town Hall with Sen. Nick Frentz and Rep. Jeff Brand
Saturday, Feb 23rd (tentative)
St Peter and Mankato
Sen. Nick Frentz and Rep. Jeff Brand will hold town hall meetings in St Peter and Mankato. Sen Frentz authored legislation to increase Minnesota’s Renewable Energy Standard. Watch the St Peter Herald and Mankato Free Press for more details as the date gets closer!


Join the Solar Revolution

2019 is a big year for solar energy.
If you’re interested in installing solar, this is a great time to do it. The federal 30% tax credit is set to step down at the end of the year, and there is no guarantee of the local Minnesota Power Solar Sense rebate beyond 2019. We'll go over what you need to know and answer your questions next Tuesday.

Twin Cities Residential Solar Bulk Buy
We invite you to participate in MNIPL’s metro area residential solar bulk buy! This program allows you to pool resources locally to install on-site solar at your home, all while supporting a local installer and saving money in the process. Fill out this interest form if you are interested in participating in the bulk buy program, or if you would like to be part of the steering committee to select a local solar installer for the program. Contact MNIPL’s Emily Minge at [email protected] or 612-750-7867 with questions.

Support Local, Cooperative Energy
Do you live in Anoka, Blue Earth, Carver, Dakota, Dodge, Faribault, Freeborn, Goodhue, Hennepin, Le Sueur, Ramsey, Rice, Scott, Steele, Waseca, or Wright County? Then you are eligible to subscribe to a cooperatively-owned community solar garden! Through this subscription you will support clean energy, be a part of a movement that gives energy users choices, support community-based solutions, and save money. Get started at and contact [email protected] to learn more.

Congregational Solar Bulk Buy
Is your congregation interested in installing on-site solar on your house of worship? MNIPL is partnering with Cooperative Energy Futures to develop a program that would allow a group of congregations to each install a solar array with no money down. To learn more contact MNIPL’s Solar Outreach Manager, Emily Minge at [email protected].  



You can see the full statewide listing of events and action opportunities anytime at our website newsletter page.