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Solar and Wind Easements and Local Option Rights Laws

Eligibility 
Commercial
Fed. Government
Industrial
Local Government
Nonprofit
Residential
Schools
State Government
Savings Category 
Photovoltaics
Solar Water Heat
Program Info
State 
Minnesota
Program Type 
Solar/Wind Access Policy
Provider 
Minnesota Department of Commerce

Minnesota law provides for the creation of solar and wind easements for solar and wind-energy systems. As in many other states, these easements are voluntary contracts. However, unlike similar provisions in other states, Minnesota law specifically provides for wind easements in addition to solar easements. For tax purposes, an easement imposed on a property may decrease the property value, but an easement which benefits a property may not add value to that property.

Minnesota law also allows local zoning boards to restrict development for the purpose of protecting access to sunlight. In addition, zoning bodies may create variances in zoning rules in situations where practical difficulties, such as lack of access to sunlight for solar-energy devices, impinge on a particular property.