Ensure that wind and/or biomass energy installations are allowed land uses for appropriate zoning districts within the zoning code.
Adopt a wind, biomass or renewable energy ordinance with provisions that promote rather than restrict renewable energy installations. Include incentive provisions such as fee guidelines, fast-tracking permits (as noted in action 26.1).
Adopt a biomass ordinance to govern cogeneration facilities.
Who's doing it
Falcon Heights - 2 star
Date action report first entered:
Date of last report update:
Falcon Heights has adopted solar ordinance that clearly defines standards for installing solar equipment. Prior to this ordinance residents needed to obtain a conditional use permit, issued on a case-by-case basis, in order to install solar equipment. This ordinance makes approval of such equipment much more accessible to residents.
The City has a Solar Energy Systems Ordinance (11.75 in City Code) that allows solar energy systems in all zoning districts provided they meet the requirements outlined in subdivision 3 of the City code. The Wind Energy Conservation Systems Ordinance (11.74 in City Code) allows both mounted and freestanding wind energy conversion systems in the following districts provided they meet the requirements outlined in subdivisions 3-5 of the City code: Commercial, Light Industrial and Industrial, Business and Professional Offices, Institutional, Planned Unit Development and the I-394 Mixed use District. The purpose of these ordinances is to clearly define the standards for installing solar or wind energy systems, to ensure they are used in a safe and effective manner and make approval of such equipment accessible to residents.
A total of 9 single-family residences, 5 businesses, and 2 public buildings were issued building permits for solar panels since the City began keeping electronic permit records in 2001. The reported aggregate value of these installations is $363,793. There are zero wind energy conservation systems in Golden Valley.
The City of Hemantown aims invite the use of renewable and alternative energy sources through safe, effective, and efficient uses through a streamlined permitting process. A variety of renewable resources are to be permitted in the city to reduce fossil fuel dependence.
Section 11.01, subdivision 9.4 (attached) of the City's Zoning Ordinance permits the use of wind energy conversion systems in the Public Buildings Zoning District and the use of solar equipment in any district subject to the accessory structure requirements.
Maplewood has an ordinance that addresses and includes solar and geothermal energy standards. An ordinance that also includes wind energy has been adopted as of October, 2011 by the city council and is now in use. The purpose of the ordinance is to "encourage
renewable energy systems that have a positive impact in energy conservation, with limited
adverse impact on the community." (Renewable Energy Ordinance, 2011)
On 11/16/2010 North Saint Paul City Council adopted an ALTERNATIVE ENERGY SYSTEMS ordinance that encourages appropriate renewable energy installations.
The purpose of the ordinance is to:
It is the goal of the City Council, as expressed in the Comprehensive Plan, to provide a sustainable quality of life for the city’s residents, making careful and effective use of available natural, human and economic resources and ensuring that resources exist to maintain and enhance the quality of life for future residents. In accordance with that goal, the city finds that it is in the public interest to encourage alternative energy systems that have a positive impact on energy production and conservation while not having an adverse impact on the community. Therefore, the purposes of this chapter include:
(A) To promote rather than restrict development of alternative energy sources by removing regulatory barriers and creating a clear regulatory path for approving alternative energy systems.
(B) To create a livable community where development incorporates sustainable design elements such as resource and energy conservation and use of renewable energy.
(C) To protect and enhance air quality, limit the effects of climate change and decrease use of fossil fuels.
(D) To encourage alternative energy development in locations where the technology is viable and environmental, economic and social impacts can be mitigated.
(E) To encourage development by establishing reasonable requirements for performance, safety, design and aesthetics of alternative energy systems.
SOLAR COLLECTION SYSTEM:
A panel, array of panels or other solar energy device, the primary purpose of which is to provide for the collection, inversion, storage, and distribution of solar energy for electricity generation, space heating, space cooling or water heating.Â When a solar collection system is built to serve a principal use on a property or as a part of a development site, the system shall be considered an accessory use.
SOLAR ENERGY SYSTEM:
A set of devices whose primary purpose is to collect solar energy and convert and store it for useful purposes including heating and cooling buildings or other energy-using processes, or to produce generated power by means of any combination of collecting, transferring or converting solar-generated energy, and including but not limited to photovoltaic devices. When a solar energy system is built to serve a principal use on a property or as a part of a development site, the system shall be considered an accessory use.
62.650 Categories of bonuses http://www.rochestermn.gov/departments/planning_zoning/Chapter%2062/62650C ATEGORIES_OF_BONUSES.asp?Printable=true
The City of St. Cloud adopted a Wind Energy Conversion Systems (WECS) ordinance as a part of the Land Development Code. Small-scale non-commercial WECS are Permitted or Conditional Uses in all agricultural, residential, commercial and industrial zoning districts as either free-standing or building-mounted towers depending on the specific district. A maximum of 100kW generating capacity is allowable as a Conditional Use within the Industrial District. Lot size minimums, setback requirements, height restrictions and tower type restrictions are in place for all districts. System design standards, including security, signage, lighting and compatibility with nearby properties are also included in the ordinance. WECS are not permitted within the Shoreland Impact Zone or the Mississippi River District Districts.
Conducted a review of land uses, zoning districts, and zoning code to determine if there were any restrictions in place that would prevent solar/wind energy installations. SolSmart is reviewing these as well to ensure that no restrictions exist.
This has cleared the way for Warren to begin developing its own solar permitting and zoning standards which it has already established a permit application
In section 1024 of the GBA's Zoning and Planning Ordinances, especially on page X-46, the code emphasizes the need to accommodate the community's sustainable energy needs by encouraging "wind energy conversion systems to be located on properties in a manner which minimizes potential negative impacts upon adjacent properties."
The City of Bloomington updated solar codes in 2013 (see 21.301.11). The standards are very favorable to promoting solar installations and making the approval process simple. Solar panels, whether roof mounted or freestanding, can be administratively approved.
The City of Coon Rapids passed and implemented the "Alternative Energy Sources and Systems" ordinance in 2014, giving residents and businesses the opportunity to utilize wind and solar energy provided they meet the City's requirements. A detailed description of the ordinance can be found in: Coon Rapids, Minnesota - Code of Ordinances/TITLE 11 - LAND DEVELOPMENT REGULATIONS/CHAPTER 11-1600 - ALTERNATIVE ENERGY SOURCES AND SYSTEMS.
The City Code allows for solar panels to be integrated into any building system for renewable energy generation. The ordinance includes design standards to ensure proper installation and function. Wind turbines are also allowed via conditional use permits throughout the city.
The City of Fridley allows the placement of solar energy devices in all zoning districts except for the Outdoor Intensive Heavy Industrial District and the Hyde Park neighborhood provided they are attached to the principal structure. Placing solar energy devices in a yard or hardscaped area can be done with a special use permit.
While the value of land in Fridley will limit the financial viability of installing a solar garden on open land, nearly all property owners have the opportunity with a special use permit.
Wind generators and other tower mounted energy devices are also allowed with a special use permit.
The City of Maple Grove passed an ordinance allowing geothermal, wind and solar installations thoughout the city subject to restrictions in 2011. Previously wind energy systems were prohibited in the city.
We are aware of one 40k photovoltaic system that has been implemented in industrial area of the city since the passage of this ordinance however we note that photovoltaics were not previously prohibited like wind energy systems.
The Minnetonka City Code allows solar equipment as a permitted accessory use within all residential zoning districts. Wind Energy Conversion Systems (WECS) are allowed as conditional uses within residential zoning districts. Additionally the city has recommended approval to the planning commission of solar equipment in other zoning districts as part of the site and building plan review process. Conditional use permit standards include setbacks, system design control standards, and compliance with applicable building and electrical code requirements.
The city has been tracking the installation of solar panels within the city through the submission of building permits. The city has seen an increase in solar panel installation in recent years.
In July 2014, the City of Red Wing amended its Zoning Land Use provisions by adding a solar ordinance. The Planning and Sustainability Commissions are working together to develop a the solar ordinance standards.
Private and public solar arrays are being built within Red Wing actively.
Section 544.23 of the Zoning Code states, "No building shall be so tall that its shadow is cast across more than 50 percent of land used for a single-family or two-family building between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. on any day of the year. The Council may make exceptions to this requirement if the applicant can prove to the Council's satisfaction that measures have been taken to mitigate this solar access requirement, which measures may include but are not limited to obtaining the consent of the affected property owner(s)."
Students from the U of M prepared a study of the City’s zoning code with a focus on providing recommendations based on the feasibility of four environmentally sustainable practices identified as high priority by city officials in Richfield: residential wind energy, solar panels, green roofs/roof gardens, and rain gardens.
In April, 2013 the city approved an addition to its Zoning Ordinance to include a section entitled Alternative Energy Ordinance. It includes solar, wind, and biomass.
Our Planning & Zoning are working on incorporating solar and geothermal energy into our Zoning Ordinance and have some preliminary language ready for the council to review at the May 8, 2012 council meeting.
The city felt that since we have solar panels on the roof of city hall we should have an ordinance in place to encourage businesses and individuals to include alternative energy options when making changes to their buildings.
Renewable energy is becoming more desireable and our Zoning Ordinance needs to reflect how the city will incorporate solar and geothermal into our city ordinance.
Wind and solar energy standards are set in the City’s Municipal Code, Chapter 24, Division 5, titled Alternative Energy Systems. The Alternative Energy Ordinance is explained and promoted at http://ci.woodbury.mn.us/environment/sustainability/alternative-energy-ordinance.