Energy

The emerging clean energy economy supports thousands of good-paying jobs in Minnesota and around the country. And wind, solar, and biofuels are helping to reduce carbon emissions, lower energy bills, and support rural economies. As a member of the Senate Agriculture Committee, Sen. Smith wrote the legislative framework for the Farm Bill Energy Title, and has introduced legislation to support energy storage innovation. Sen. Smith believes that clean energy is a win-win for Minnesota and is committed to fighting for federal policies that support these innovative technologies.

Minnesota has long been a leader in renewable energy. The state ranks eighth in the nation for clean-energy patents, and in the last decade, clean energy startups have attracted more than $450 million in investments to Minnesota. Today, renewable energy accounts for a quarter of all electricity generated in Minnesota–the state is ranked fifth in the nation for solar installations, and nearly 20 percent of our electricity now comes from wind power. Meanwhile, Minnesota’s biofuel industry generates nearly $5 billion for the state economy every year and supports thousands of jobs, all while producing a fuel that is more environmentally friendly than fossil fuels and reducing our dependence on foreign oil.

Sen. Smith believes that clean energy isn’t just smart environmental policy, it’s smart economic policy. In Minnesota, clean energy sector jobs are growing twice as fast as jobs in other parts of the economy, which is why Sen. Smith is pushing the federal government to follow Minnesota’s lead and do more to accelerate the clean energy transition. She believes we should do this through national clean energy targets, by funding more clean energy research, by extending tax credits that incentivize clean and renewable energy, and by supporting biofuels. You can count on Sen. Smith to continue fighting for these policies in the Senate.

Latest Releases

Klobuchar, Smith Secure Federal Funding to Improve Electrical Grid Resilience Against Severe Weather

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and Tina Smith (D-MN) announced that they secured federal funding for Xcel Energy’s extreme weather mitigation project through the U.S. Department of Energy’s Grid Resilience and Innovation Partnerships (GRIP) program. This funding will support Xcel Energy projects to boost grid resilience against extreme weather like blizzards, severe cold, and ice storms which threaten electric reliability.  “It’s critical that our electric grid is able to withstand extreme weather,” said Klobuchar. “This federal funding will improve the resilience and reliability of our electric grid to keep the lights on for families and businesses all while creating good-paying jobs.” “As climate-fueled extreme weather becomes more common, it’s critical that our power grid is reliable and can withstand threats from severe weather and other harsh conditions,” said Smith. “Modernizing our electric grid is a win for the environment and for Minnesotans who will benefit from more affordable, reliable electricity. I am proud of our work to help deliver these investments and look forward to seeing the benefits of a stronger, more reliable energy grid.” This funding was made possible through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, which Klobuchar and Smith helped pass in 2021. 

Klobuchar, Smith Secure Federal Funding to Strengthen Electric Grid Reliability and Resilience in Minnesota

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and Tina Smith (D-MN) announced that they secured federal funding for upgrades to Minnesota Power’s High Voltage Direct Current (HVDC) terminal stations through the U.S. Department of Energy’s Grid Resilience and Innovation Partnerships (GRIP) program.  This project will modernize the aging terminal stations of a 465-mile HVDC transmission line that runs from Center, North Dakota, to Hermantown, Minnesota, to strengthen grid reliability in rural areas and improve access to affordable, clean electricity.  “Investments in our infrastructure are down-payments on the economic well-being of our state,” said Klobuchar. “This federal funding will allow us to upgrade these aging terminal stations, boost economic development in northern Minnesota, and create hundreds of good-paying jobs all while supporting our renewable energy goals.” “Modernizing our electric grid is a win for the environment and for Minnesotans who will benefit from more affordable, reliable electricity,” said Smith. “I am proud of our work to help deliver these investments and look forward to seeing the impact of these improvements on energy prices and grid reliability.” This funding was made possible through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, which Klobuchar and Smith helped pass in 2021.  Earlier this year, Klobuchar and Smith sent letters to U.S. Department of Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm in support of Minnesota Power’s HVDC terminal station upgrade project. 

Klobuchar, Smith Announce Federal Funding to Lower Utility Costs, Transition to Clean Energy in Hennepin County, Duluth

WASHINGTON, D.C. [04/07/22]—Today, Senators Amy Klobuchar and Tina Smith (both D-Minn.) announced that Duluth and areas in Hennepin County – including Minneapolis – were selected as part of a new federal program to help local governments create a path towards clean energy. The program will provide direct support from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to develop community-wide action plans that address local air pollution, energy resilience, utility costs and energy burdens, and provide long-term jobs. This new program – the Communities Local Energy Action Program (Communities LEAP) – will also provide technical assistance for communities to secure funding from

U.S. Senator Tina Smith Joins Fellow Electrification Caucus Co-Chairs Calling On President Biden To Achieve True Energy Independence With Electrification And Clean Energy

WASHINGTON [4.1.22] – The Co-Chairs of the Electrification Caucus – U.S. Senators Tina Smith (D-Minn.) and Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.), along with U.S. Representatives Paul Tonko (D-N.Y.) and Kathy Castor (D-Fla.) – released the following statement in response to President Biden’s latest proposals to address the energy price hikes brought on by Vladimir Putin’s unjustified war in Ukraine: “Increasing our deployment of clean energy and adoption of energy-efficient electric heating and cooling systems is a national security issue, and it has become a global security imperative with Putin’s war of aggression in Ukraine. While it is important to take short-term measures

U.S. Senator Tina Smith’s Statement on the Need for Energy Independence in Response to Russia’s Invasion of Ukraine

WASHINGTON, D.C. [03/03/22]—Today, U.S. Senator Tina Smith (D-Minn.) released the following statement on the need for energy independence as we face rising energy prices caused by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine: “The tragic events playing out in Ukraine drive home just how important it is to cut ourselves free of the global oil and gas market. The dramatic spike in global fossil fuel prices caused by this unprovoked war demonstrate the damage that can be done to the pocketbooks of American families when our energy supply hinges on the whims of autocratic leaders. Putin uses his oil and gas as a source

U.S. Senator Tina Smith Announces Major Investment in Electric Vehicle Charging for Minnesota

WASHINGTON, [2.11.22] – Today, U.S. Senator Tina Smith (D-Minnesota) announced that Minnesota will receive a major investment to build out electric vehicle (EV) charging throughout the state. The funding – over $10 million in Fiscal Year 2022 – is a direct result of the bipartisan infrastructure law, which Senator Smith helped pass in November 2021. “The fact is, the switch to electric vehicles in happening around the world; EV sales have more than doubled over the past year,” Smith said. “If America is serious about leading the electric vehicle revolution, we must ensure charging is accessible to all Americans. I’m

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