State and Local Policy Database


City Scorecard Rank


Minneapolis, MN

70.00Scored out of 100Updated 10/2020
Community-Wide Initiatives
Score: 8.5 out of 15 points
Community-Wide Summary List All

The City of Minneapolis adopted its Climate Action Plan in 2013 to serve as a roadmap for lowering greenhouse gas emissions.

Last updated: September 2021

Community-Wide Climate Mitigation and Energy GoalsList All

Climate Mitigation Goal

Minneapolis has set goals in its Climate Action Plan to reduce community-wide greenhouse gas emissions by 30% under 2006 levels by 2025 and 80% under 2006 levels by 2050. Based on ACEEE’s analysis of past years emissions data, ACEEE projects that the city will meet its near-term community-wide GHG emissions reduction goal. 

The city has released comprehensive greenhouse gas inventories for the years of 2013, 2014, and 2015. The city also releases citywide emissions data on an online tracking page.

Energy Reduction Goal

The city’s Climate Action Plan set goals of increasing the energy efficiency of commercial and industrial buildings by 20% and residential buildings by 15% by 2025. These goals are relative to a growth baseline.       

Renewable Energy Goal

Minneapolis’s city council formally adopted a community-wide goal of 100% renewable energy by 2030.

Last updated: September 2021

Equity-Driven Approaches to Clean Energy Planning, Implementation, and EvaluationList All

Equity-Driven Community Engagement

The city created the Minneapolis Green Zones Initiative. The Initiative is a place-based policy that puts greater emphasis on improving health and spurring economic development using environmentally conscious efforts in communities that face the cumulative effects of environmental pollution, as well as social, political and economic vulnerability in low-income communities, indigenous communities, and communities of color. There are currently two Green Zones: the Northern Green Zone and the Southside Green Zone. Green Zones are community driven. Members of the Northern and Southside Green Zone communities sit on task forces or councils that serve as an advisory board to the City Council and Mayor on the implementation and evaluation of their corresponding Work Plans, which were also developed by community members. Green Zone Task Forces develop and lead outreach work plans to engage community members in planning their initiatives.

Equity-Driven Decision-Making

Minneapolis’s Climate Action Plan Environmental Justice Working Group recommended the creation of Green Zones within the city.

Equity Accountability Measures

The racial equity impact analysis (REIA) helps City of Minneapolis staff, departments and elected policymakers consider racial equity outcomes when shaping policies, practices, programs and budgets. The REIA is both a process and a tool. The process guides the city in shifting the approach to city work so it can effectively consider the racial equity impacts of an initiative at all stages of development. The tool is a set of meaningful questions. The answers to these questions will shape a story about racial equity impacts of a City initiative.
Staff are required to conduct a full REIA when bringing certain Requests for Council Action (RCA) before a City Council committee. The standard REIA form must be completed and uploaded with a RCA submission for the following: new ordinances and updates to ordinances, charter amendments, new city enterprise policies, and updates to policies.

The city and Green Zone Task Forces use numerous indicators to track the outcomes of sustainability initiatives that serve the two zones.

Last updated: September 2021

Clean Distributed Energy ResourcesList All

The City is currently supporting (via participation and funding) an Integrated Utility Hub feasibility study for the Upper Harbor Terminal redevelopment project. This study, working with partners like the Mississippi Watershed Management Organization, will assess the technical and financial feasibility of the Integrated Utility Hub model and detail the environmental, social and economic performance outputs. 

The city completed a Climate and Health Resilience Hub pilot program, which included a feasibility study funded by the city on a microgrid incorporating solar photovoltaics and battery storage.

The city has engaged in developing community solar gardens and reserved shares for low-income households.

Last updated: September 2021

Mitigation of Heat Islands List All

UHI Mitigation Goal

Minneapolis does not have a quantifiable urban heat island mitigation goal, but both the city’s Climate Action Plan and 2040 Comprehensive Plan state broad intentions to increase the urban tree canopy.

UHI Policies and Programs

Minneapolis has adopted land conservation requirements which mandate that real estate developers permanently preserve open space if a residential development results in a net increase of residential dwellings for the city. The Minneapolis Stormwater Utility Fee Credit System allows credits for various low impact development practices such as green roofs, vegetated swales and rain gardens.  

Last updated: September 2021

Buildings Policies
Score: 22 out of 30 points
Buildings Summary List All

The city of Minneapolis enforces the state’s energy code. The city administers a commercial and multifamily benchmarking ordinance. Minneapolis offers several incentives to commercial and residential properties energy efficiency, solar energy installation, and low-income energy projects.

Last updated: June 2021

Building Energy CodesList All


The State of Minnesota currently requires local jurisdictions to comply with the Minnesota Energy Code. The state based the Minnesota Energy code on the 2012 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) for residential buildings and 2018 IECC for commercial buildings. Minneapolis does not have the authority to set its own building energy code, but actively advocates to the state for more stringent codes. To learn more about the Minnesota building energy code requirements, please visit the State Policy Database.


Commercial properties must comply with the Minnesota Energy Code. The city’s zEPI score for their commercial energy code is 52.5.


Residential properties must comply with the Minnesota Energy Code. The city’s zEPI score for their residential energy code is 51.9.

Solar-readiness Policies

The city has not adopted solar-ready requirements for commercial or residential buildings. Minneapolis allows solar use in all zones. The city is SolSmart Gold designated. 

EV-charging readiness and infrastructure policies

As of May 2021, Minneapolis requires that all buildings with up to nine residential units provide at least one EV-ready space with 208/240v outlets, and all remaining spaces must support charging on 120v outlets. Hotels, offices, any building with over ten residential units, or any non-residential building with at least twenty off-street parking spaces is required to provide a percentage of EV-ready spaces in addition to its required EV charging spaces. The ordinance is effective January 1, 2022. 

Low-energy use requirements

In 2006, the the City established the LEED Building Policy, which requires all municipal new construction and major renovation building projects to achieve LEED Silver certification with an “emphasis” on energy credits, in addition to the prerequisite low-energy requirements.

In 2020, the city passed a suite of policies collectively called the Sustainable Building Policy. The City has recently enacted a Sustainability Policy for one to three-unit new construction residential development projects through the Minneapolis Homes: Financing program.

Last updated: August 2021

Building Energy Code Compliance and EnforcementList All

Minneapolis does not staff full time employees solely dedicated to energy code enforcement. The city requires progress inspections to ensure energy-code compliance during development, plan reviews, and performance testing. The city provides upfront support to building owners and/or developers through on demand support and in-house meetings.

Last updated: June 2021

Policies Targeting Existing BuildingsList All

Retrocommissioning requirements

The city’s 2019 expansion to the Commercial Building Energy Benchmarking and Transparency Ordinance requires an ASHRAE level 1 evaluation or an accepted tune-up/recommissioning within the past 5 years for the lowest-performing buildings. This requirement is only enforced if there is an option available at no cost to the owner.

Commercial and multifamily benchmarking

Minneapolis requires commercial and multifamily buildings 50,000 square feet and greater to benchmarking energy consumption and report the data to the city. The compliance rate was 93% for commercial buildings and 84% for multifamily buildings in 2018.

Single-family energy disclosure    

The city requires homeowners to disclose their energy consumption at the time of sale. The compliance rate was 95% in 2020.  

Rental energy disclosure

Owners of select rental properties are required to disclose energy use information to residential tenants at time of application if applications are provided, or post the information in the property if no applications are provided.

Energy audit requirements

Per the time of sale residential energy disclosure requirement, building owners are required to undergo an energy assessment.

In 2020, the city is requiring  a pilot group of low-performing commercial properties to receive energy audits at no cost. The city will use budget money to cover the cost of the audits. 


Minneapolis offers density bonuses to residential and commercial construction that aim to achieve a 35% above code energy rating.

Minneapolis offers PACE financing to commercial buildings for solar and energy efficiency improvements. The city offers a two percent loan program to small businesses for energy efficiency improvements. Minneapolis also offers a Commercial Energy Efficiency Loan program

The city’s Green Business Cost Share program provides financial incentives for solar incentives. The program prioritizes commercial and multifamily properties within the bounds of Minneapolis Green Zones or those participating in the 4d Naturally Occurring Affordable Housing Program because they aim to expand energy efficiency and renewable energy installation in low-income areas.

The City pays for free Home Energy Squad visit to homeowners anywhere in the City with incomes below 100% AMI. This program is offered through the city's partner, CEE. 

Last updated: June 2021

Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Workforce DevelopmentList All

The city has contracted the National Association of State Energy Officials to conduct a study on developing a renewable energy workforce. The city released the results of the study in early 2019. Additionally, Minneapolis issued an RFP for a community solar garden that included local workforce participation requirements. 

The Minneapolis School District offers a Girls in Engineering, Mathematics, and Science (GEMS) and Guys in Science and Engineering (GISE) program to youth. The City of Minneapolis has provided funding in 2019 to provide workforce education to 200 young people in Minneapolis to prepare them to participate in the growing clean technology economy.  

Last updated: June 2021

Score: 19.5 out of 30 points
Transportation Summary List All

The transportation authority serving the City of Minneapolis is Metro Transit. Metro Transit provides the public transportation for the city and the broader metropolitan area, including train, bus, light rail, and public bike service. The Metropolitan Council is the MPO in charge of conducting metropolitan transportation planning. Its area of jurisdiction encompasses the Twin Cities region. The Minneapolis Department of Public Works, is the city agency charged with managing the city’s transportation network.

Last updated: January 2017

Sustainable Transportation Planning List All

Sustainable Transportation Plan

The updated Transportation Action Plan was formally adopted by the Minneapolis City Council in December of 2020. In line with goals set in the Climate Action Plan and reinforced in Minneapolis 2040, the Transportation Action Plan sets a goal of reducing vehicle miles traveled by 1.8% per year.

VMT/GHG Targets and Stringency

Minneapolis has a GHG reduction target for the transportation sector calling for a 31% reduction between 2010 and 2025. This is equivalent to 2.1% annually.

Progress Achieved Toward VMT/GHG Targets

Minneapolis is currently on track to continue reducing it's annual GHG emissions.

Last Updated: November 2021

Location Efficiency List All

Location Efficient Zoning Codes

Minneapolis code incentivizes transit-oriented development, compact development, mixed-use development, street connectivity, and form-based elements. The City's newly adopted comprehensive plan also updates previous zoning to encourage increased location efficiency. 

Residential Parking Policies

Minneapolis requires one parking space per dwelling on average, and has eliminated parking minimums for downtown zones.

Location Efficiency Incentives and Disclosure

As an incentive to promote location-efficient efficiency, Minneapolis has a variety of mixed-use zoning categories, density and FAR bonuses, zoning overlay districts that focus on pedestrian and transit-orientation and site plan review standards. Chapters 548 and 549 of the zoning code include floor-to-area ratio premiums for development projects in downtown zoning districts and density bonuses for commercial districts. The City’s Transit Oriented Development program incentivizes walkable, moderate to high density development served by frequent transit with a mix of housing, retail, and employment choices designed to allow people to live and work with less or no dependence on a personal car.

Last Updated: November 2021

Mode Shift List All

Mode Shift Targets

To promote a modal shift in transportation, Minneapolis has set a goal to raise the bicycle commute mode share to 15% by 2025. In the Transportation Action Plan the City has set a mode shift goal to have 3 of every 5 trips taken by walking, biking, or transit. Minneapolis has set a goal of having 60% of trips taken by means other than a car – 35% by walking and biking and 25% by transit.

Progress Achieved Toward Mode Shift Targets

Minneapolis’s average bicycle commute mode share between 2011-2013 was 3.9% while the average for 2015-2017 (the latest comparable data) was 4.2%.

Complete Streets

Minneapolis’s complete streets policy scored an 85.6 out of 100 according to the National Complete Streets Coalition.

Last Updated: November 2021

Public Transit List All

Transportation Funding

The transportation entities that serve the City of Minneapolis has received $306,534,322.60 on average annually between 2015 and 2019. That equates to roughly $166.85 per capita between 2015 and 2019 within the Authority's service area. 

Access to Transit Services

The Transit Connectivity Index measures transit service levels. It is based on the number of bus routes and train stations within walking distance for households scaled by frequency of service. The City of Minneapolis' Transit Connectivity Index value is 8.3, scoring 1.5 points in the City Scorecard.

Last Updated: November 2021

Efficient VehiclesList All

Vehicle Purchase Incentives

At this time, Minneapolis does not offer incentives for citizens to purchase hybrid, plug-in, or EV vehicles.

Vehicle Infrastructure Incentives

Xcel Energy has received approval for a pilot incentives program. More details can be found within the city's 2019-2021 Work Plan on page 14

EV Charging Locations

The City has 146 charging ports available for public use, equivalent to 34 ports per 100,000 people.

Electric School Bus Goal

Minneapolis does not have an electric school bus goal.

EV Transit Bus Goal

Metro Transits plans to convert to 100% electric buses by 2040.

Last Updated: November 2021

Freight System EfficiencyList All

Minneapolis has strategies in place to address freight efficiency within the 2009 Minneapolis Plan for Sustainable Growth. Examples of these strategies include off-street loading requirements with new developments, permitting of freight to use on-street parking meters in the am, encouragement of off-hours deliveries, strategic placement of truck loading zones, and prioritization of smaller vehicles for drayage.

Last Updated: November 2021

Clean, Efficient Transportation for Low-Income CommunitiesList All

Affordable New TOD Housing Policy

Minneapolis’ Affordable Housing Trust Fund and Low Income Housing Tax Credit pools both award scoring points for TOD affordable housing developments. These are points for proximity to high service fixed route/express/limited stop transit, for proximity to other transit stops, for proximity to jobs and for higher density development. The city also incentivizes affordable housing with a density/FAR bonus in transit station areas.

Connecting Existing Affordable Housing Stock to Efficient Transportation Options

NiceRide, the bike sharing program in Minneapolis, has a Community Partners program through which they work with assorted organizations to offer discounted memberships to their clients. Metro Transit, the local transit authority, has a Transit Assistance Program that provides access to $1.00 fares for one year to low-income residents.

Last Updated: November 2021

Energy & Water Utilities
Score: 13.5 out of 15 points
Energy & Water Utilities Summary List All

Xcel Northern States Power (Xcel Energy), an investor-owned utility (IOU), is the primary electric utility serving the City of Minneapolis. CenterPoint Energy, an IOU, is Minneapolis’s primary natural gas utility. The City of Minneapolis is an active promoter of electric and gas efficiency programs. The State of Minnesota requires spending and savings targets for its utilities through an EERS. Utilities are also required to file IRPs to the Public Utilities Commission identifying how known resources will meet consumer need in future years. This includes energy efficiency as a significant resource. Minnesota passed the Energy Conservation and Optimization (ECO) Act in May 2021, which gives utilities more options for how they help customers save energy. The ECO Act increases the energy efficiency resource standard and raises energy efficiency spending to assist low-income households. To learn more about the state requirements for electric and gas efficiency, please visit the Minnesota page of the State Database. On the state level, Minnesota strongly advocates for additional spending requirements for energy efficiency projects for all of its utilities.

The Water Treatment and Distribution service within the Minneapolis Department of Public Works services Minneapolis with drinking water. Environmental Services within the Metropolitan Council treats Minneapolis’s wastewater. The Surface Water and Sewers service within the Department of Public Works manages the city’s stormwater.

Last Updated: July 2021

Electricity and Natural Gas Efficiency SavingsList All

In 2019, according to Xcel Energy, they achieved 404,837 MWh in net incremental electricity savings, representing 1.40% of retail sales. In 2019, Xcel spent $92,816,075 on energy efficiency programs, which represents 2.06% of its retail revenue. These savings figures cover the entire Minnesota service territory, not just Minneapolis. Xcel offers electric efficiency incentives and technical assistance to residential and commercial/industrial customers.

In 2019, CenterPoint Energy reported savings of 18.18 MMtherms from natural gas efficiency programs, representing 1.49% of its retail sales. In 2019, CenterPoint Energy spent $37,252,502  on natural gas energy efficiency, which equates to $46.55 per residential customer. These savings figures cover the entire Minnesota service territory, not just Minneapolis. CenterPoint Energy similarly offers natural gas efficiency programs to residential and business customers.

In 2014, the City of Minneapolis entered a unique partnership with Xcel Energy and CenterPoint Energy, the city's two largest utilities. The Memorandum of Understanding, referred to as the Clean Energy Partnership, expanded the conditions of the franchise agreement to include an active role for the utilities in the city's achievement of its energy goals. This agreement follows the city's adoption of its Climate Action Plan which seeks to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 15% by 2015, 30% by 2025, and 80% by 2050. The first Annual Report on the Clean Energy Partnership's activities was released in June 2016 and is available on the Partnership's website, as is the Memorandum of Understanding between the City and its utility partners. The fifth annual report of the Clean Energy Partnership is also now available on the website.

Last Updated: July 2021

Low-Income & Multifamily EE Programs List All

Low-Income Programs

Xcel Energy offers a portfolio of programs for low-income customers, including the Home Energy Savings Program (HESP), Low Income Home Energy Savings Program (LIHES), and Multi-Family Energy Savings Program (MESP). HESP offers free home energy education and improvement services to income-qualifying customers. HESP starts with a home assessment and installation of LED lighting. Additional measures offered are refrigerator, freezer, room air conditioner replacement and recycling. For natural gas customers the program offers replacement of furnace, boiler or water heater. HESP will also provide weatherization services for homes heated with natural gas or electricity from Xcel Energy, and the program coordinates with the Weatherization Assistance Program (WAP). The LIHES Program offers installation services to electric and gas customers who seek to improve their homes’ comfort and lower their utility bills. During a home visit, the program identifies energy savings opportunities, educates customers about energy-saving measures, and then installs the customers’ measures of choice, such as light bulbs, water efficiency measures, and door and attic hatch weatherstripping.

MESP offers free education and electric saving measures to income-qualifying multi-family buildings. Services are provided in the resident’s units and include installation of LED bulbs, replacement and recycling of refrigerators, freezers, and room air conditioners. Outside of the low-income portfolio, the Multi-Family Building Efficiency Program will provide double incentive for income-qualified buildings.

Income eligible participants may leverage funding through the Weatherization Assistant Program or other external sources—such as City funded and administered grant programs—while participating in utility-managed programs. Beyond funding for efficiency projects, some communities support the program outreach through their staff, community members and city specific communications resources. Health and safety measures were not eligible for conservation improvement program (CIP) funding in 2019 or 2020. However, funding for health and safety measures was recently approved to be funded through the Home Energy Savings Program (HESP) starting in 2021.

In 2019, according to Xcel Energy, it achieved 2,187 MWh in energy savings, while spending $2,486,988 and serving 4,269 electric low-income customers.

CenterPoint Energy offers a variety of low-income programs, including a Low-income Weatherization program, Low-Income Rental Efficiency program, Low-Income Free Heating System Tune-Up program, Non-Profit Affordable Housing Rebate program, and Low-Income Multifamily Housing Rebate program. These programs provide a variety of measures, such as insulation, furnaces, boilers, water heaters, water efficiency measures, thermostats, and health and safety measures. The Nonprofit Affordable Housing program provides rebates for insulation, furnaces, boilers, water heaters, and energy recovery ventilation.

The Multifamily program provides a 25% bonus to building owners on any equipment eligible for a commercial rebate in an affordable housing building. The utility works with WAP service providers to leverage funds from the Department of Energy for the implementation of no-cost weatherization measures in low-income residences. CenterPoint Energy targets the elderly, disabled, and households with children for participation in its low-income programs. In 2017, the Clean Energy Partnership conducted a Community Engagement Pilot project to identify barriers and benefits related to energy efficiency activities in lower income communities and communities of color. The Neighborhood Hub and Minneapolis Renter's Coalition were selected to conduct field investigations to determine the best way to educate and engage community members and stakeholder groups in utility energy efficiency programs.

CenterPoint Energy programs leverage Weatherization Assistance Program, Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program, and non-profit funding. CenterPoint Energy funds can be used to cover required health and safety measures when weatherization is warranted such as a system combustion safety, radon and asbestos mitigation, and knob and tube wiring and ventilation.

In 2019, according to CenterPoint Energy, it achieved 0.22 MMtherms of savings, while spending $4,054,697 and serving 2,868 low-income customers.

In addition, the City of Minneapolis funding to cover the $100 customer co-pay for the utility home energy audit and direct install progress, Home Energy Squad. The City's financial contribution is specific to low-income customers and/or residents of our environmental justice areas, the Green Zones.

Multifamily Programs

Both Xcel Energy and CenterPoint Energy offer the Multi-Family Building Efficiency (MFBE) program and the Multi-Family Energy Savings Program. The MFBE provides a free whole-building energy audit, whole-building energy usage, free installation of screw-in LEDs, energy saving faucet aerators and showerheads, water heater blanket and LED signs in the resident’s units and common areas of the buildings. If the building has sufficient cost-effective savings opportunities to reach a minimum of 15% energy savings, they can achieve an incentive of at least 25% of the project cost—the incentive increase with higher savings achievement potential. If the building qualifies as low income, the incentives are doubled. Xcel Energy and CenterPoint Energy also provides a dedicated low-income multifamily program, Multi-Family Energy Savings Program. This program provides a 25% rebate bonus on top of its standard rebates for income-qualified customers.

In 2019, according to Xcel Energy, it achieved 2,908 MWh of savings, while spending $1,736,684 and serving 355 multifamily properties and 11,888 multifamily housing units. In 2019, according to CenterPoint Energy, it achieved 0.14 MMtherms, while spending $972,040 and serving 267 multifamily properties and 8,771 multifamily housing units.

Last Updated: July 2021

Provision of Energy Data by UtilitiesList All

Both Xcel Energy and CenterPoint Energy provide whole-building data to customers. Xcel Energy provides a direct feed of whole-building energy usage data from their metered data repository into ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager. Beginning in 2020, the Company’s MFBE program will offer benchmarking services to those customers who are interested. CenterPoint Energy launched a data access and benchmarking portal that offers a secure, online solution to request and receive whole-building natural gas energy use data that automatically transfers data to ENERGY STAR portfolio Manager. CenterPoint Energy has not yet assessed customer usage of the benchmarking portal.

The city of Minneapolis provides community wide energy usage information for planning and evaluation purposes through their annual Clean Energy Partnership reports. The 2019 Annual Report as the most recent aggregate energy use data. CenterPoint Energy provides aggregated community-wide energy usage information upon requests. Since 2013, CenterPoint Energy has released annual community-wide usage data by sector (i.e., residential, commercial, industrial) to the City of Minneapolis. Xcel Energy also provides Community Energy Reports when requested from a city.

The City of Minneapolis advocates for data access on behalf of utility customers within the city. The City most recently advocated for MN Public Utilities Commission Docket No. E,G-999/M-19-505 Data Access.

Last Updated: July

Decarbonization and Climate Change Mitigation Efforts of Energy UtilitiesList All

Utility Climate Mitigation Goal

In December 2018, Xcel Energy set a goal to provide customers with 100% carbon-free electricity by 2050. They also include an interim goal of reducing carbon emissions 80% by 2030 compared to 2005 levels. To achieve this goal, Xcel Energy will need to reduce emissions by 6.2% annually from 2019 levels in the state of Minnesota.

City-Led Efforts to Decarbonize the Electric Grid

The City is actively involved in almost a dozen dockets before the Public Utility Commission. The City Council has authorized the formal intervention of the City of Minneapolis, through the Sustainability Division staff, as a party of the Xcel Energy 2020-2034 Integrated Resource Plan Docket before the Minnesota PUC. The City has also established the Minneapolis Clean Energy Partnership with the utilities, which has a 2019 to 2021 Work Plan including numerous renewable energy goals and activities.

In addition, City staff have directly engaged with Xcel Energy in their Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) planning process by advocating for increases in renewable electricity generation at the utility-scale, community-scale, and building-scale. Xcel Energy hosted a series of in-depth stakeholder meetings/workshops in advance of releasing their preferred IRP plan, and City staff actively participated in all of these meetings. The City is also classified as an intervenor in the IRP and thus a party to any settlements or agreements. This allows City staff to formally advocate and negotiate for the maximum level of renewable electricity production to meet the City's climate and renewable electricity goals. 

Current state law in Minnesota prevents the city from pursuing community choice aggregation programs.

Last Updated: July 2021

Efficiency Efforts in Water ServicesList All

Citywide Water Efficiency and Goals

While the City of Minneapolis does not run a program with deep water savings measures and energy savings measures, CenterPoint Energy offers water efficiency measures, including low-flow showerheads and faucet aerators, as part of its Home Energy Squad direct installs and DIY program, and Xcel offers several efficiency measures that also save water, such as efficient showerheads, faucet aerators, ENERGY STAR clothes washers, and efficient commercial dishwashers. The City is currently subsidizing Home Energy Squad visits (free for Green Zone residents) and 0% financing on weatherization improvements (for all Minneapolis residents). The free Home Energy Squad visits include free direct installation of low-flow showerheads and faucet aerators.

The City’s Waterworks is focusing their water efficiency efforts on non-revenue water at a system level using the American Water Works Association’s Water Audit Software and methodology. Their goal is reducing the unaccounted-for water portion of the non-revenue water to 10% or less. WTDS recently completed a leak detection study of most of the water distribution system that searched for and identified leaks. In addition, the City’s residential meters are at the end of their useful life and are due for replacement. As a result, new meters will be installed over the next five years. Both of these efforts lead to either identifying or reducing non-revenue water.

Water Plant Efficiency and Self-Generation

While the water utility has not adopted a strategic energy management approach, Minneapolis’s Water Works is included in the 1.5% annual goal to reduce energy use in city facilities. Metropolitan Council Environmental Services (Metro) came very close to meeting its 2015 energy goal of reducing energy purchases by 25% from 2006 levels. After reaching 23% reductions, a new goal was set to further reduce energy purchases by 10% between 2015 and 2020. Specific strategies to meet the goals include optimizing aeration processes, installing the Blue Lake wastewater treatment plant digester, installing the non-condensing steam turbine at the Metro wastewater treatment plant, and replacing the return- and waste-activated sludge pump drives at Metro.

The Metropolitan Wastewater Treatment Plant currently uses incinerators to burn the biosolids removed from the treated water to create energy for the operations of the plant. At the Blue Lake wastewater treatment plant, methane biogas recovered from the digester facility replaces 9 million BTU/hour of natural gas that powers the solids facility.

Last Updated: August 2021

Local Government Score:
6.5 out of 10 points
Local Government Climate and Energy Goals List All

The Minneapolis Climate Action Plan established citywide climate and energy goals for the city.

Climate Mitigation Goal

Minneapolis aims to achieve a 1.5% annual reduction in greenhouse gas emissions from city facilities. Based on ACEEE’s analysis of past years emissions data, ACEEE projects that the city will meet its near-term GHG emissions reduction goal for municipal operations. 

Energy Reduction Goal

We did not find information regarding a municipal energy reduction goal.

Renewable Energy Goal

Minneapolis formally adopted a resolution establishing a 100% renewable energy goal for municipal operations by 2022.

Last updated: May 2021

Procurement and Construction Policies List All

Fleet Policies and Composition

Minneapolis does not have formal fuel efficiency requirements for its vehicles or energy-efficient vehicle procurement policies in place. However, the Green Fleet Policy requires the city to make every effort to reduce GHG emissions from the fleet by 1.5% annually, purchase vehicles with highest available emissions reduction, and inventory fleet GHG emissions. The City’s fleet is composed of 8% efficient vehicles, including hybrid, plug-in hybrid, and battery electric vehicles.

Public Lighting

Minneapolis has adopted a Street Light Policy standard that requires full cutoff fixtures and complies with the International Dark-Sky Association’s Model Lighting Ordinance. As of 2021, 78% of streetlights have been replaced with LEDs. Most streetlights operate on photo sensors.

Onsite and offsite renewable systems

Minneapolis has installed onsite renewable systems on municipal facilities. 

Inclusive procurement 

The Minneapolis Renewable Electricity and Energy Efficiency Workforce Assessment provides a summary of the inclusive contracting and procurement policies that the City follows. These policies required local and women- and minority-owned business utilization requirements in a recent RFP for a solar garden project.

Last updated: May 2021

Asset Management List All

Building Benchmarking

Minneapolis has been using energy management software, EnergyCAP, since 2007. Minneapolis Ordinance 47-190 requires benchmarking of city buildings of 25,000 square feet or more. 100% of the square feet of City-owned buildings is benchmarked in EnergyCAP, buildings over 25,000 square feet are also benchmarked in Portfolio Manager.

Comprehensive Retrofit Strategy

Using data from EnergyCAP, the city prioritizes retrofit opportunities. Most recent retrofits of buildings larger than 25,000 square feet have been extensive retrofits (all lighting, HVAC, etc.). This software’s dashboard allows the City’s energy manager to strategize comprehensive retrofits by prioritizing buildings consuming the most energy and operating the least efficiently. Through the software, the City has avoided energy costs of $8 million over the past 6 years - an annual savings of 13% of the total energy/utility costs.

Last updated: May 2021