Consumers Energy and Key Stakeholders Reach Agreement on Clean Energy Plan
Consumers Energy's D.E. Karn coal plant in Hampton Township (source: Consumers Energy)

Consumers Energy has announced a settlement agreement with key stakeholders regarding its Clean Energy Plan, which is aimed at eliminating coal as a fuel source for electricity by 2025. It would make Consumers one of the first in the nation to go coal-free. The agreement still needs approval from the Michigan Public Service Commission.

“This is a historic commitment to lead the clean energy transformation and create a brighter future for our state,” said Garrick Rochow, President and CEO of Consumers Energy. “A diverse set of stakeholders came together to endorse a Clean Energy Plan that will provide reliable and affordable energy to customers for decades to come while protecting the environment.”

The company said the plan provides a 20-year blueprint to meet Michigan’s energy needs while protecting the environment.

The settlement includes:

• COAL PLANT RETIREMENTS BY 2025: closes all three units at the J.H. Campbell coal plant in West Olive, Michigan in 2025 in addition to two units at the D.E. Karn coal plant in 2023 (as per the 2018 Clean Energy Plan) and will be among the first utilities in the nation to go coal-free by 2025.

• RISE OF SOLAR: continues the rapid transition to clean, renewable sources by adding nearly 8,000 megawatts (MW) of solar power by 2040 ensuring 60 percent of our capacity comes from clean sources.

• BATTERY DEPLOYMENT: accelerates energy storage from 2030 to 2024 with a total of 75 MW of energy storage by 2027, achieving 550 MW by 2040.

• SYSTEM RELIABILTY: ensures supply reliability through the purchase of the Covert Generating Station in Van Buren County, a natural gas-fired power plant.

• AFFORDABLE ENERGY: creates price stability and helps customers save an estimated $600 million dollars through 2040 compared to the 2018 Clean Energy Plan. Consumers Energy would also continue its successful energy waste reduction programs that have saved customers more than $4 billion since 2009. In addition, the company has committed to continue to fund utility bill assistance programs for low-income customers.

“Reaching consensus on this Clean Energy Plan moves Michigan toward a cleaner, more reliable energy future while caring for our co-workers and communities impacted,” Rochow said. “We’re grateful for the thoughtful, positive contributions of all stakeholders throughout this process and look forward to the MPSC’s decision on our plan.”