MFU President Wertish joins Lt. Gov. Flanagan, state legislators, agency leaders on renewable energy seminar in Germany
July 11, 2019
Minnesota Farmers Union (MFU) has long held a commitment to advancing the use of renewable energy of all forms. From July 13-20, MFU President Gary Wertish will carry out that commitment further, traveling to Germany with a nonpartisan delegation of 21 Minnesota agriculture, business, nonprofit, government and academic leaders.
The group will spend a week visiting showcase examples of the country’s dramatic energy transformation and talk with its leaders.
“It’s critical for family farmers to always have seats at the table in discussions about energy and the climate,” President Wertish said. “I’m pleased to join this trip for a second year and represent rural Minnesotans.”
The annual Berlin Seminar on Energy Policy is part of a larger Regional Economies and Renewable Energy Policy dialogue hosted since 2016 by the University of Minnesota’s Institute on the Environment (IonE), in partnership with Germany’s Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy.
Rural communities have been leaders of Germany’s statewide energy transformation and the Minnesota delegation will visit the internationally renowned rural community of Saerbeck (pop. 7,500), an example of rural political leadership, vision and substantial local economic return and, since 2015, a technical exchange partner on clean energy and sustainability with the city of Morris, Minn.
“MFU appreciates the focus on rural areas in this energy exchange,” President Wertish said. “Our rural communities benefit greatly from renewable energy. We see that locally in our Renewable Energy Working Sessions, and I look forward to learning more in Germany.”
The delegation will be led by Minnesota Lt. Gov. Peggy Flanagan; and it includes Commissioner Steve Kelley of the Minnesota Department of Commerce and Deputy Commissioner Andrea Vaubel of the Minnesota Department of Agriculture, among others. They will visit sites where the renewable energy future is visible already, learn about specific policy mechanisms and meet with practitioners to discuss the effects of those policies and ways for further improvement.
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