Have you heard the news?  DTE Energy is investing in strengthening the safety and reliability of our energy grid, while investing in clean energy.

On May 2, 2019, the Michigan Public Service Commission approved a rate change that will help fund new and upgraded electric infrastructure as well as tree trimming to protect the grid. The Commission also approved a new pilot program supporting electric vehicles and a new private solar compensation model. 

Keep reading to learn more about the key elements of our approved plan….

Customer Bills

DTE electric customer bills reflect more than $250 million in pass-through tax cuts returned to customers, with prices offset further by significant ongoing savings from energy efficiency efforts.

Under the rate approved by the MPSC on May 2, residential customers using 500 kWh/month will see an additional $6.19 on their monthly bills.  Commercial customers will see an average 4.34 percent increase and industrial customers an average 2.5 percent increase.  The new prices go into effect on May 9.

Tree Trimming

Tree trimming is the single largest driver in addressing the safety, reliability and storm resiliency of DTE’s energy grid. Trees-related issues, such as limbs or the entire tree falling on power lines during a storm, are responsible for more than two-thirds of the time DTE customers are without power and account for about one-third of outages.

We know that preventing tree-related outages is the most effective way to reduce the duration of outages our customers experience.  We will focus on areas that are known to have experienced the most serious tree-related conditions, while aiming to make the greatest gains in safety and reliability for the entire grid.

Electric Vehicle Pilot Program

Charging Forward is the newly approved electric vehicle pilot program which will bring the benefits of EVs to DTE customers through customer education and outreach, charging infrastructure, and residential charging support.

DTE expects wider adoption of electric vehicles will benefit all its customers.  EV owners will be encouraged to charge during periods of lower electric use, which should help lower electric prices in the long term by smoothing out energy demands on the grid. Plus, more EV use will help reduce carbon emissions and dependency on foreign oil, while increasing local economic development.

Our renewable energy commitment

DTE is committed to building a clean energy future for our customers, planning to more than double our renewable energy generation capacity by investing an additional $2 billion in wind and solar energy by 2024.  Today DTE is already a leader in the state for renewable energy development.  We currently operate 31 solar and 14 wind parks here in Michigan.  Learn more about this plan.

The MPSC, following the direction of  Michigan’s 2016 Energy Law, directed DTE to update its compensation model for customers generating solar and wind energy to more accurately reflect their use and generation of energy.  The bottom line: under the new rate, these customers will continue to use the grid for back-up energy and earn credits for selling energy back. Existing net metering customers, and those who file completed applications before changes go into effect May 9, will be grandfathered in under the existing program for 10 years from the date of their property’s initial enrollment.

As an effective alternative, DTE’s MIGreenPower program offers an easy and affordable way to support a greener Michigan and reduce carbon footprints.  Many of our customers participate in MIGreenPower, attributing up to 100% of their energy use to solar and wind generation.  Plus, the program requires no additional investment in equipment or making alterations to homes.  Learn more and sign up today.