GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Utility giant DTE Energy has updated its clean energy plan, now vowing to retire all coal plants by 2032.
The CleanVision Integrated Resource Plan lays out the next 20 years for the company, which will “adapt to how the Company’s customers live and work today while meeting the energy demands of tomorrow.”
“Our CleanVision Integrated Resource Plan will end our use of coal in 2032 while developing enough Michigan-made renewables to power approximately 4 million homes,” DTE Energy CEO and chairman Jerry Norcia said in a statement.
DTE claims the new plan will help the company hit its carbon emission reduction goals — cutting its output by 85% by 2023, 90% by 2040 and be a net zero utility by 2050.
Through the plan, DTE Energy says the utility will develop more than 15,000 megawatts of energy through renewable sources by 2042.
The Monroe coal power plant will be shut down by 2032, three years earlier than originally anticipated. DTE’s other coal power plant, in Belle River, is being repurposed and is expected to run solely on natural gas by 2026.
Norcia says DTE worked with 21 other organizations to develop the CleanVision Integrated Resource Plan, including several environmental groups that were critical of the company’s past strategies.
Andrew Sarpolis, with the Sierra Club’s Michigan chapter, told Bridge Michigan that moving away from coal is a victory for the environment.
“Every additional year of (the Monroe coal power plant’s) operation exacerbates climate change and harms our communities,” Sarpolis told Bridge Michigan. “By retiring the plant sooner, we can have a greater positive impact on the state’s health and climate.”
The clean energy transition will not be cheap. DTE estimates it will invest more than $11 billion into the changes over the next decade. But the transition is expected to pay off for customers in the long run and support more than 32,000 jobs across Michigan, not to mention the environmental impact.
“This plan puts our customers first by reducing the future costs of our clean energy transformation by $2.5 billion, while reliably generating clean, affordable energy now, and for generations to come,” Norcia stated.
The CleanVision Integrated Resource Plan still must be approved by the Michigan Public Service Commission. The MPSC approved Consumers Energy’s transition plan last year. Consumers Energy is expected to close its final three coal plants, including the final unit of its J.H. Campbell plant in Port Sheldon Township, by 2025, making it one of the first utility companies in the nation to go coal-free.