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Minnesota National Guard
Minnesota National Guard teams with private sector to bring solar energy to Camp Ripley

Minnesota National Guard Little Falls, Minn-- The Minnesota National Guard and Minnesota Power will join forces to build a major solar energy project at Camp Ripley, the largest military base in Minnesota.

The Minnesota National Guard and Duluth-based Minnesota Power today signed a memorandum of understanding outlining plans to build a 10-megawatt utility-scale solar energy array spanning 100 acres at Camp Ripley. The project will be the largest solar energy installation on any National Guard base in the country. Minnesota Power will also identify ways to help the Guard save 30 percent of its energy, and install backup generation for energy security at Camp Ripley.

"The Minnesota National Guard and specifically Camp Ripley has been long looking for ways to increase our environmental stewardship. This signing marks a milestone along our path to making that vision a reality," said Maj. Gen. Rick Nash, Minnesota National Guard Adjutant General.

"The Minnesota National Guard is committed to working with local partners in the government and the private sector, like Minnesota Power, to assist us in our pursuit of sustainable infrastructure." 

The solar farm and backup generation will be designed and constructed to allow Camp Ripley to use the energy produced by the project during infrequent periods when the electric grid is down, providing enhanced energy security for Minnesota's largest military site, which benefits all Minnesotans. At 10 megawatts, it will be among Minnesota's largest single-site solar arrays, producing more electricity than the camp normally requires. During non-emergency operation the solar energy produced would flow into Minnesota Power's electric service territory, which encompasses 26,000 square miles in central and northern Minnesota.

The solar energy project is projected to cost $25 million, and could be completed in the 2015-2016 time frame.

Completion of the Camp Ripley solar project will help the Minnesota National Guard meet energy conservation objectives outlined by the Department of Defense And Camp Ripley would achieve an energy security priority by gaining the ability to function completely independent of the electric grid in emergency situations. The project will stand to showcase a clean energy partnership between an innovative public utility and the military. 

In addition, the National Guard and Minnesota Power will work together to identify and complete programs that will help Camp Ripley meet its energy savings goal of 30 percent  (beginning with a 2003 baseline).  Minnesota Power personnel have recommended more than 50 different energy conservation measures to assist in meeting the energy savings goal.

Phase three of the memorandum signed today outlines how Minnesota Power will install reciprocating engines - either diesel or natural gas -- at Camp Ripley that will serve a dual purpose. First, the engines would provide capacity and peaking energy to Minnesota Power, operated through remote dispatch during periods when energy market conditions call on it Secondly, this "backup generation" could provide emergency generation to Camp Ripley.

For more information on the Minnesota National Guard visit: www.MinnesotaNationalGuard.org, or find us on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/MinnesotaNationalGuard

Contact Minnesota National Guard Public Affairs at mn.ng.web@mail.mil, or call office line: 651-282-4410

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Minnesota Guardsmen learn survival skills, train with Norwegian counterparts

Posted: 2018-07-03  01:36 PM
NOREX 45 Over the course of 10 days, 100 Soldiers and Airmen from the Minnesota National Guard who traveled to Norway June 17-26, 2018, for the 45th Norwegian Reciprocal Troop Exchange learned valuable survival skills and shared their knowledge with members of the Norwegian Home Guard. This year's exchange was the second to take place during the summer months in the history of the longest-running military partnership between two nations.

"It was a great experience for both the Minnesota National Guard and the Norwegian Home Guard," said Capt. 'Kiwi' HorgA�ien, the senior Norwegian instructor. "A cultural exchange, a social exchange and military exchange all packed into one."

The 45th exchange got off to a late start, with flight delays causing the trip to be shortened from its normal length of two weeks. The delay meant that the Minnesota Guardsmen jumped right into training, heading out to the field after just a few hours of sleep.



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Posted: 2018-06-29  10:48 AM
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Red Bulls Kickoff Division Warfighter

Posted: 2018-06-13  01:38 PM
DIV WFX CAMP ATTERBURY, Ind. - "A Warfighter is an exercise that allows the Division to evaluate their ability to maneuver assets in a battle," said Master Sgt. Greg Weaver, the Operations Non-Commissioned Officer in Charge for the Division Headquarters and Headquarters Battalion. "It is designed to focus on particular areas and specific objectives to be evaluated or tested."

The Division has geared its' planning and training efforts in preparation for Warfighter since July 2017. Coordinating transportation for Soldiers and equipment was often on the mind of Maj. David Johansson, the logistics officer for the 34th ID. With the coordination of Johansson and his team, troops and equipment all converged on Camp Atterbury, enlisting the help of 89 railcars, 280 tractor-trailers, and nearly 50 buses for the movement.

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Minnesota-based aviation unit takes part in Warfighter Exercise

Posted: 2018-06-08  11:59 AM
34ECAB WFX CAMP ATTERBURY, Ind. - More than 150 Soldiers of the Minnesota National Guard's 34th Expeditionary Combat Aviation Brigade are here participating in a multi-echelon training event, Warfighter Exercise 18-5, May 30 to June 15.

The exercise, which is part live and part virtual, is testing the St. Paul, Minnesota-based aviation unit's ability to conduct operations and mission command in a high-intensity, complex operating environment. Soldiers are being challenged to take decisive action as they focus on air-ground operations -- or synchronizing and integrating aviation operations into the scheme of maneuver planned and conducted by forces on the ground.

In this case, the units on the ground are being commanded by the Rosemount, Minnesota-based 34th Red Bull Infantry Division, which is also participating in the exercise.



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