Category Archives: Utilities

Leidos To Build Smart Grid For Lansing Water & Light

LANSING — Leidos Holdings Inc., a Reston, Va.-based defense company that provides technical, engineering, and scientific services, announced it will implement the Lansing Board of Water and Light’s new smart grid initiative.

Through this contract, Leidos will use its Smart Grid Select product to manage the installation of the utility’s advanced metering infrastructure and provide meter data management, customer support portals, and grid and business analytics.

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New Report: Rooftop Solar Provides Benefits to Michigan’s Electric Grid

LANSING – Utility customers with rooftop solar systems, known as solar distributed generation (DG), are providing economic support to Michigan’s electric grid and should not be overcharged to support it. That is among the findings of an analysis by the Institute for Energy Innovation, “Solar Energy in Michigan: The Economic Impact of Distributed Generation (DG) on Non-Solar Customers.

The report was completed in advance of a study to be undertaken by the Michigan Public Service Commission (MPSC) required under Michigan’s new Clean and Renewable Energy and Energy Waste Reduction Act.

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Leave The Grid In The UP? Michigan Tech Team Finds It Feasible

HOUGHTON — While Michigan’s Upper Peninsula is not the sunniest place in the world, solar energy is viable in the region. With new technologies, some people might be inclined to leave the electrical grid. A team from Michigan Technological University looked into the economic viability of grid defection in the Upper Peninsula.

Known for snow rather than sun, the region could still support a significant network of solar photovoltaic energy systems. Solar energy alone in the Upper Peninsula is seasonally restricted. However, solar coupled with cogeneration and batteries could overcome any cloudy, cold winter day.

Michigan Tech engineers and sociologists explored what this new triple-threat technology, and the role of demographics, could mean for energy alternatives in the Upper Peninsula in a new study published in Energy Policy. Their analysis found that by 2020, leaving the electrical grid is a viable economic option for the majority of seasonal households (92 percent) as well as single-family owner-occupied households (65 percent). The study was published in the journal Energy Policy.

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Consumers Energy Hits $1B Spending Mark With Michigan Companies Early

JACKSON — Consumers Energy is making good on a five-year commitment to Michigan businesses, announcing today that it has spent over $1 billion in less than a year with employers based in the Great Lakes State.

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Energy Business Group Sets May 4 Member Meeting

LANSING — The Michigan Energy Innovation Business Council says new panelists are confirmed for its fourth annual member meeting, to be held Wednesday, May 4 at the Kellogg Hotel and Conference Center in East Lansing.

Non-members may also attend the meeting. Tickets are still available at this link. Tickets are $100 for EIBC members and $175 for non-members. There is also a $50 government rate.

The meeting will feature an opening dialogue with Patricia Poppe, who will become president and CEO of Jackson-based Consumers Energy on July 1, and Sally Talberg, chair of the Michigan Public Service Commission.

This full-day conference provides attendees an opportunity to network, learn about innovations in advanced energy, and get an overview on the latest policy developments in Lansing.

Panel discussions during the day will include:
* Innovations in Transportation: Electrification, Lightweighting, and Connected Vehicles
* Taking Advantage of the ITC/PTC: What Are the Next Five Years for Renewable Energy
* Media Perspectives Panel: Discussion of All Things Energy Related -Political Landscape, Legislation, and 2016 Elections
* How to Think Big in Small Places: Energy Innovations in Rural Communities, Industrial Parks, and Downtowns
* The Changing Landscape of Energy Efficiency: Demand Response, ESCOs, and Where We Go From Here

A partial lists of scheduled panelists includes:
* Andy Balaskovitz, reporting fellow at Midwest Energy News, Grand Rapids
* Mathias Bell, manager of market development and regulatory affairs at the Minneapolis utility software developer Opower
* Lawrence E. Brown, executive director of the American Lightweight Materials Manufacturing Innovation Institute
* Myles Burnsed, director of business development at Oakland, N.J.-based groSolar
* Liesl Eichler Clark, president, Michigan EIBC
* Lawrence Drzal, director, Institute for Advanced Composites Manufacturing Innovation, Michigan State University
* Mattnew Felan, president and CEO of the Bay City-based Great Lakes Bay Region Alliance
* Scott Ferguson, project executive, director of sustainability, Rockford Construction, Grand Rapids
* Zachary Gorchow, editor, Gongwer News Service, Lansing
* Robert Jackson, loan and renewable energy program manager, Michigan Energy Office
* Emily Lawler, capitol and business reporter, MLive, Lansing
* Andrew S. Levin, founder and managing partner, Levin Energy Partners LLC, Detroit
*  Marc Lewis, vice president, regulatory and external affairs, AEP Indiana Michigan Power, Ft. Wayne, Ind.
* Doug Luciani, CEO, TraverseConnect, the parent company of the Traverse City Area Chamber of Commerce and the multi-county economic development corporation Venture North
* Tim Mahler, vice president of operations, ClearResult, an Austin, Texas-based designer of energy efficiency programs and a provider of other services for utilities.
* Melanie McCoy, superintendent of the municipal utility Sebawaing Light and Water
* Kyle Melinn, news editor, Michigan Informaton and Research Service Inc. (MIRS), Lansing
* David W. Palsrok, government policy advisor, Dykema, Lansing
* Jim Saber, vice president, business and technology development, NextEnergy, the state of Michigan’s advanced energy industry accelerator
* J.R. Tolbert, senior director of state policy at the Washington, D.C. nonprofit Advanced Energy Economy
* Shane VanCise, energy solutions account executive, Johnson Controls Inc., Saginaw

Sponsorship opportunities are also still available, and most come with the opportunity to exhibit at the event. Please contact Nicole Forward at for more information.

Sponsors of the event include Consumers Energy, CleaResult, Invenergy, ITC Holdings Inc. and the Michigan Agency for Energy.

Consumers Customers Can Get Power Outage Alerts On The Go

JACKSON — With stormy weather predicted later this week, Consumers Energy is introducing automatic outage alerts for its 1.8 million residential and business electric customers to provide them with accurate, up-to-date information during a power outage.

Residential customers can choose to receive outage updates by email, phone call or text message by visiting Consumers’ new website at to set their preferences.

Business customers can sign up for text alerts by texting REG to 232273 (CECARE) and providing their account number when prompted.

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GE Gets Fermi 2 Plant Outage Work

DETROIT — Detroit-based DTE Energy (NYSE: DTE) has awarded outage services work to GE Power & Water (NYSE:GE) through GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy and GE Power Generation Services for the utility’s Fermi 2 Nuclear Power Plant in Newport, near Monroe.

GE Hitachi will provide outage and inspection services related to the boiling water nuclear reactor at the Fermi 2, while GE Power Generation Services will provide inspection and maintenance services to the main generator and six turbine valves. The services will be provided during an outage this fall.

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ITC’s Thumb Loop Power Line Project Completed

NOVI – A new system to bring power from new wind farms in Michigan’s Thumb has been energized by a subsidiary of Novi-based ITC Holdings Corp., the nation’s largest independently owned electric transmission company.

ITCTransmission invested an estimated $510 million to build the 345,000 volt line, and has turned on the third and final phase of the project.

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DTE Energy Gets Federal OK For New Nuclear Plant

DETROIT — The federal government says DTE Energy can build a new nuclear power plant in Monroe County.

But the Detroit-based utility says it doesn’t plan to just yet.

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission has approved a license for DTE to build and run a nuclear plant on the site of the existing Fermi 2 Nuclear Power Plant in Newport.

But DTE spokesman Guy D. Cerullo said that the company has “not committed to building the new plant, but will keep the option open for long-term planning purposes.”

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Consumers Energy Hits $1 Billion Michigan Spend

JACKSON — Consumers Energy has achieved its promise to increase its spending with other Michigan businesses by $1 billion over the past four years.

The energy provider’s announcement came last week at the Pure Michigan Business Connect-Consumers Energy Pay it Forward Summit in Grand Rapids. Muskegon-based Newkirk Electric received the contract that took Consumers Energy over the $1 billion mark.

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