Consumers Energy and key stakeholders reach agreement to reduce coal by 2025


Jackson’s Consumers Energy and key state stakeholders have agreed to reduce coal for power generation by 2025, among other environment-focused initiatives. // Image bank

Consumers Energy in Jackson, Michigan’s largest energy supplier, and key stakeholders across Michigan have agreed to a settlement tied to the company’s clean energy plan, a sweeping proposal to stop use coal as a fuel source for power generation by 2025, making the company one of the first in the country to go coal-free.

The agreement, which requires regulatory approval, includes a broad coalition of customer groups, environmental organizations, Michigan Public Service Commission (MPSC) staff, energy industry representatives and the Attorney General. of Michigan, and provides a 20-year plan to meet Michigan’s energy needs. needs while protecting the environment for future generations.

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

The company has updated its original 2018 Clean Energy Plan by including a commitment to accelerate the phase-out of coal through 2025, among other customer and environmental benefits, in its Clean Energy Plan 2021, filed with the MPSC last June. The settlement agreement supporting Consumers Energy’s plan comes after more than a year of listening to ideas and feedback from key stakeholders. The next step in the process is for the MPSC to review the Settlement Agreement.

The settlement includes:

  • Shutdowns of coal-fired power plants by 2025: Shuts down all three units at the JH Campbell coal-fired plant in West Olive, Michigan in 2025 in addition to two units at the DE Karn coal-fired plant in 2023 (as per the 2018 Clean Energy Plan) and will be among the first utilities country to go coal-free by 2025.
  • Rise of the solar: Continues the rapid transition to clean, renewable sources by adding nearly 8,000 megawatts (MW) of solar power by 2040, ensuring that 60% of the company’s 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, reaching 550 MW by 2040.
  • System reliability: Ensures reliability of supply 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 through 2040 compared to the 2018 Clean Energy Plan. Consumers Energy would also continue its successful energy waste reduction programs that have enabled customers to saved more than $4 billion since 2009. In addition, the company is committed to continuing to fund utility bill assistance programs for low-income customers.

“Achieving consensus on this clean energy plan moves Michigan toward a cleaner, more reliable energy future while caring for our colleagues and affected communities,” Rochow says. “We are grateful for the thoughtful and positive contributions from all stakeholders throughout this process and look forward to the MPSC’s decision on our plan.”

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