Yesterday, the Minnesota Department of Commerce issued its highly anticipated Minnesota Renewable Energy Integration and Transmission Study, which indicated that the “capacity for adding additional wind and solar up to 40% by 2030 can be reliably accommodated by the electric power system” (DOC press release here). The study stated that with relatively modest upgrades to existing transmission, the power system can be successfully operated for all hours of the year with the increases in wind and solar. For increases above 40%, additional analysis would need to be done. The study was conducted by Minnesota utilities and transmission companies in coordination with MISO and directed by the Minnesota Department of Commerce. It is the result of 2013 legislation requiring the analysis of increasing Minnesota’s renewable energy standard to 40% (and higher proportions thereafter) while maintaining system reliability.

We’ve made a copy of the DOC study available for download (PDF format).