June 14, 2018 Read More →

Michigan utility with 6.7 million customers to exit coal generation by 2040

The Detroit News:

Consumers Energy said Wednesday it will stop using coal to generate electricity by 2040.

The announcement comes as the utility company files a plan this week with the Michigan Public Service Commission outlining how it will meet that goal. The company said it will increase its use of renewable resources, especially solar, and begin closing its remaining five coal-fired units in 2023.

Consumers’ announcement comes as inexpensive natural gas and renewable electricity has brought serious competition to coal-fired power plants. DTE Energy Co. said in May 2017 that it would close its five coal plants in Michigan by 2040.

As a part of its plan, Consumers would close two coal-fired generating units at Karn Generating Complex in Hampton Township in 2023. The remaining two units at that facility would close in 2031, along with two units at the J.H. Campbell Plant in West Olive. A third unit at Campbell would serve consumers until 2040. Their retirement follows the closure of seven coal units in 2016.

Consumers would increase renewable energy from 11 percent to 37 percent by 2030 and 43 percent by 2040. It would add 5,000 megawatt of solar energy throughout the 2020s in addition to wind and battery storage. The company also plans by 2040 to decrease carbon emissions by 80 percent from 2005 levels. The plan expects by 2040 a 22 percent decrease in electricity demand by improving and updating demand response, energy efficiency and the power grid

Consumers Energy, Michigan’s largest energy provider, serves 6.7 million residents in the Lower Peninsula.

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