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Southern Minnesota Municipal Power Agency receives national energy innovator award

Christopher Schoenherr's picture
Director - Agency and Government Relations Southern Minnesota Municipal Power Agency
  • Member since 2008
  • 4 items added with 2,645 views
  • Jun 22, 2021 9:00 pm GMT

Southern Minnesota Municipal Power Agency (SMMPA) received an American Public Power Association Energy Innovator Award during APPA’s National Conference in Orlando, Florida. The award honors utilities that have developed or applied creative, energy-efficient techniques and technologies to their work, to provide better service to electric customers or projects that increase the efficiency of utility operations or resource efficiency.

SMMPA’s Member Electric Vehicle (EV) Charging Network was a collaboration between the agency, its member utilities, and ZEF Energy to facilitate the acceptance of electric vehicles and help with the transformation of both the electric utility and transportation industries. SMMPA provided each participating member a DC Fast Charger and two duel-port Level 2 chargers and the associated maintenance programs while member utilities located suitable sites and handled the installation.

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“We are proud to have our members be recognized for their forward-thinking approach and innovative work to help facilitate greater adoption of electric vehicles within their communities,” said Dave Geschwind, Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer for SMMPA.

This project will bring fast charging stations to the region and reduce range anxiety by providing EV owners with a quick charge when they are traveling longer distances. SMMPA has developed a blueprint for how to create an EV charging network across members within a joint action agency.

Implementing the EV network is part of the SMMPA 2.0 Strategic Initiative announced in 2020 that supports member utilities in providing affordable, reliable, and innovative service to their communities as SMMPA takes steps to reduce its carbon emissions by 90 percent by 2030. Learn more at

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Thank Christopher for the Post!
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Matt Chester's picture
Matt Chester on Jun 22, 2021

Congratulations to SMMPA!

Jim Stack's picture
Jim Stack on Jun 23, 2021

Chris, Thanks for highlighting this area for this award. I have been writing to and about all the new fast charging sites and how they need to also provide some Level 2 charging. Some cars like plugin hybrids don't have a DCFC  Fast charge port. Some drivers are not in a big hurry. Someone in that area has a full understanding of plugin vehicles. 

    How do they set the pricing for charging in that area? 

Christopher Schoenherr's picture
Christopher Schoenherr on Jun 23, 2021

Each member utility can set the charging rates at the level they desire. Some (not all) had it free for an initial period. For the most part the member have set the rates at the same levels as those used for the chargers deployed as part of the Volkswagen settlement. For DCFC, $5 connection fee and $0.30/minute. For the Level 2s, $2/hour with no connection fee.

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