Our energy mix has always included renewable energy thanks to our 13 hydroelectric dams. But we’re even more committed to renewable resources today. Our Integrated Resource Plan outlines a clear path forward to meet our customer energy needs for the next 20 years. It calls for a balanced portfolio of diverse energy resources—especially renewables. Today more than 10% of our electric supply is renewable.
Renewable energy resources are environmentally friendly and naturally replenished. They can be easily replenished or can’t be used up. We’ve recently invested in wind parks and solar farms, and have 43 power purchase agreements for renewable energy. We provide more than 1,000 megawatts of clean energy. Our parent company, CMS Energy, also owns four biomass plants.
You won’t find us complaining about the wind much these days. Not since we added two wind energy parks to our renewable energy portfolio. Cross Winds® Energy Park in Tuscola County and Lake Winds® Energy Park in Mason County add more than 200 megawatts capacity to our supply. In addition to clean, perpetual power, the wind parks generate thousands of dollars in new tax revenue for local communities.
Want to tap into solar energy without adding solar panels to your home or business? Here’s your chance. We have a program that lets customers participate in renewable energy without investing time and resources. It’s called Solar Gardens. Customers who enroll in the program can earn a credit on their bill, based on how much energy is produced at the solar facilities. Solar Gardens at Grand Valley State and Western Michigan universities will produce around 4 megawatts of electricity.
Here’s how it works. You subscribe by the ½ kilowatt “SolarBlock” of capacity, with an average home needing about 10-12 blocks. You pay an additional monthly fee to cover the cost of building and maintaining the solar garden. Learn More.