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DTE, Consumers Weigh In on Expanding Rooftop Solar

Solar | March 21, 2014 | By Jim Dulzo

Representatives of Michigan’s two largest utilities, DTE Energy and Consumers Energy, made their first presentation to the state’s solar work group, and expressed little enthusiasm for expanding the use of customer-generated, jobs-producing, clean solar energy. ...

MLUI takes third place in national fundraising challenge

Pipeline, Enbridge | March 14, 2014 | By Hans Voss

Two weeks ago, MLUI was selected to participate in a fundraising challenge offered by Moosejaw and Patagonia through Crowdrise. We raised a total of $21,778 for our cause from more than 225 people! On behalf of everyone here at MLUI, I’d like to thank each and every one of you who donated. Thanks to you, we nabbed third place. ...

For What It’s Worth: Former Utility Exec Talks Value of Solar

Clean Energy, Solar | March 10, 2014 | By Jim Dulzo

Karl Rábago's crowning achievement, so far, is his success at Austin Energy, where he parlayed an obscure phrase—Value of Solar—into a guiding principal that helped the public electric utility’s customers “go solar,” big-time. Value of Solar shows in exacting detail why encouraging customers to go solar—and paying them fairly for their power—is good for the company and all of its customers....

Work Group, Meet ‘Value of Solar’

Clean Energy, Solar | March 4, 2014 | By Jim Dulzo

About 40 energy experts gathered in Lansing last week for their second discussion about ways the state’s top utilities can spur more solar power development in Michigan, which is now well behind many other states in deploying the booming clean-energy technology....

State, Top Utilities, Energy Groups Eye Next Steps for Solar

Solar | February 25, 2014 | By Jim Dulzo

A specially assembled “solar work group” of state regulators, officials from the state’s two largest utilities, and clean-energy business advocates is considering ways to deploy more solar energy in Michigan that help, not hurt the firms’ bottom lines; protect ratepayers’ wallets while offering them an entrepreneurial opportunity; and boost the state’s solar manufacturers and installers....

Enbridge’s Straits Pipeline Forum: More Questions than Answers

Pipeline, Enbridge | February 12, 2014 | By Jim Dulzo

Hundreds of people turned out last week to pepper local officials and employees of Enbridge, Inc. about the 60-year-old oil pipeline running under the Mackinac Straits. They wanted to know what's being done to prevent underwater leaks, and how a rupture would be contained before it gravely damaged one of Michigan's most beautiful places. By the end of the meeting it was clear that opponents had more questions than Enbridge managed to answer. ...

Holland Working on Community Energy Plan

Power to Change | February 4, 2014 | By Jim Dulzo

Officials and dozens of residents in Holland, Mich., are working to implement a Community Energy Plan after the city began approving work groups for the effort in August 2012. The CEP, would, among many other things, expand the snowmelt district and channel waste heat to nearby commercial buildings. The 40-year strategy calls for cutting the community’s energy consumption by up to 60 percent and moving HBPW to cheaper, cleaner natural gas and non-polluting wind and solar power....

Gov. Snyder’s Missed Opportunity

Power to Change | January 17, 2014 | By Jim Dulzo

Clean energy advocates weren’t expecting a whole lot from Gov. Snyder on energy issues during his State of the State address. But we were at least hopeful, given the pre-speech scuttlebutt, that he would say something substantive and positive about them. That didn't happen. Snyder literally spent six seconds on energy. His address was a missed opportunity for a very positive shout-out about the energy work done over the past year. ...

A Letter to Governor Rick Snyder

Power to Change | January 15, 2014 | By MLUI

MLUI and a number of community leaders in northern Michigan penned this letter to Gov. Rick Snyder to thank him for his work on energy over the past year and urge action in 2014 on a clean energy future for the state. ...

Gov. Snyder's State of the State Viewing and Letter

Clean Energy | January 9, 2014 | By Brian Beauchamp

Gov. Rick Snyder will be presenting his annual State of the State Address on Thursday, Jan. 16, at 7 p.m. The three major topics he plans to focus on are mental health, seniors, and ENERGY! The speech offers us an opportunity, given our interest in having a positive impact on state policy that supports the good work we are engaged with in northwest Michigan, to publicly acknowledge this landmark event and provide collective feedback both before and after the address....

Rogers City: Goodbye to Coal, Hello to Opportunity?

Power to Change | December 18, 2013 | By Jim Dulzo

The problem that supporters of the proposed 600-megawatt plant never recognized was this: Planet Earth is not a perfect place to build a coal plant. Coal is too dirty; it has become too expensive to mine, ship, and burn; and it is the number-one source of climate-changing carbon emissions. If the world hopes to escape the worst effects of airborne toxins and global warming, it must stop burning the stuff—the quicker the better. So Wolverine’s cancellation of its so-called “Clean Energy Venture” puts the firm in step with the rest of the country and the world....

TCSaves Renewal Reflects Efficiency’s Local, Statewide Success

Clean Energy, TCSaves, Efficiency First | December 12, 2013 | By Jim Dulzo

Sparked by strong initial success, Traverse City’s residential efficiency program, TCSaves, is again offering city residents a path to a more comfortable home that uses less energy. The communitywide effort, dormant since last spring, has a new goal, a new partner, and special borrowing options....

As Coal Power Fades, Consumers Eyes Big, New Gas Plant

Clean Energy | December 4, 2013 | By Jim Dulzo

State utility regulators are considering a historic case that could help determine how much clean energy Michigan’s second-largest electric utility develops over the next 25 years....

Snyder Efficiency Report: There’s Room for More

Efficiency First | November 1, 2013 | By Jim Dulzo

The Snyder administration’s latest—and last—draft report on Michigan’s energy future says what it should: The state’s five-year-old energy efficiency mandate, known as Energy Optimization, is not only working well, there’s plenty of room for utilities to do more to help their customers save electricity and natural gas. But we have only until Wednesday, Nov. 4, to submit comments on the draft and influence what that final version says. ...

Comment on Synder's Renewable Energy Report

Power to Change, Renewables | October 14, 2013 | By Jim Dulzo

There are lots of happy faces around our office since the Snyder administration released its draft report on renewable energy. Based on last winter’s energy forums, it says we can get to 30 percent renewable energy by 2035 without straining the power grid—or our wallets! But the report is subject to some revision before it’s finalized, which is why we’re reaching out: We’d like you to chime in!...

Tips for Commenting on Snyder's Renewables Report

Power to Change, Renewables | October 14, 2013 | By MLUI's Renewable Energy Partners

The governor’s report on renewable energy is open for public comment until Wednesday, October 16. Let’s make sure we dominate the comments section and show our strong support for increasing our use of renewable energy. Here are some tips for submitting a comment....

Advocates: Snyder Renewables Report Correct, Conservative

Renewables, Power to Change | October 10, 2013 | By Jim Dulzo

Gov. Rick Snyder’s administration is earning high marks for its draft report on the possibilities for renewable energy in Michigan. But now some clean energy advocates and entrepreneurs, who strongly praised the report’s conclusions and the unusually open, public process Snyder’s administration used producing it, are submitting comments before a Oct. 16 deadline asserting that its findings, while correct, are too conservative....

MLUI Report: The Power of Energy Efficiency

Efficiency First | September 30, 2013 | By Jim Dulzo

MLUI's special report, "The Power of Energy Efficiency," introduces some of the people already making Traverse City and northwest Michigan "efficiency-ready": homeowners, business people, contractors, officials, and experts with first-hand knowledge of just how well energy efficiency works. ...

Introduction: The Power of Energy Efficiency

The Power of Energy Efficiency | September 30, 2013 | By Jim Dulzo

Energy efficiency puts our contractors to work; boosts local retail sales; keeps more of residents’ hard-earned dollars in town; increases property values; makes the community more attractive; and by lowering overall energy demand, slows the rise of everyone’s energy costs....

Traverse City Can Be A Leader

Efficiency First | September 26, 2013 | By Jim Dulzo

TCSaves showed that a well done, public-private, residential energy efficiency program can reach many homeowners, make them more comfortable and lower their utility bills, produce good-paying jobs, keep more cash in the local economy, increase home values, and make financial sense....

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