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DTE Energy to Invest in Wayne County Environment Improvement Projects

/EIN News/ -- Detroit, May 22, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- DETROIT, May 22, 2020 – DTE today said it will invest $7.5 million dollars to support environmental and sustainable improvements in Wayne County, Mi. The investment is a key part of an agreement reached with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Sierra Club that resolves an ongoing dispute over how the EPA’s new source review (NSR) rules would apply to new emission control investments for coal plant operations. The agreement enables DTE Electric to continue its progress toward net zero carbon emissions by 2050.

“Our intent from the beginning of this process has been to reduce emissions, and this agreement allows us to involve the community to do even more,” said Skiles Boyd, DTE vice president, environment management and resources. “We want to thank the EPA and the Sierra Club for working with us. This action by all parties will further improve the quality of life for residents of Wayne County.”

The initial community improvement project will focus on transportation electrification with an electric-powered bus program. 

DTE will also assemble a Community Environmental Action Committee, made up of community and university representatives who will guide the deployment of funds. Projects determined by the committee may include:

  • An urban solar array
  • Urban foresting and farming
  • Energy reduction initiatives
  • Wildlife habitat restoration and education programs

The agreement with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Sierra Club concludes a decade-old dispute over pre-project requirements for maintenance work at DTE coal plant operations.   Since DTE began NSR discussions with EPA and the Department of Justice, the company has invested more than $2 billion in emission control technology and another $2 billion in renewable energy while retiring more than 1100 MW of coal-fired generation. In addition, DTE’s accelerated coal plant retirements for Trenton, River Rouge and St. Clair remain on track.      

With the settlement finding no NSR violations, DTE agreed to resolve the matter at this time as it is consistent with DTE Electric’s path to drastically reduce emissions by 80 percent and retire its coal operations by 2040. This is also consistent with its aspiration to achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. 

DTE’s coal facilities have supported their communities for decades. To continue this support where two plants are scheduled to close, the settlement includes the company’s commitment to spend $7.5 million for environmental and sustainable activities in a defined area in Wayne County. Also included in the settlement, DTE will work with the Kemeny Recreation Center in Detroit to improve energy efficiency and reduce the overall energy costs of the facility.

About DTE Energy

DTE Energy (NYSE: DTE) is a Detroit-based diversified energy company involved in the development and management of energy-related businesses and services nationwide. Its operating units include an electric company serving 2.2 million customers in Southeast Michigan and a natural gas company serving 1.3 million customers in Michigan. The DTE portfolio includes energy businesses focused on power and industrial projects; renewable natural gas; natural gas pipelines, gathering and storage; and energy marketing and trading. As an environmental leader, DTE utility operations will reduce carbon dioxide and methane emissions by more than 80 percent by 2040 to produce cleaner energy while keeping it safe, reliable and affordable. DTE Electric aspires to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2050. DTE is committed to serving with its energy through volunteerism, education and employment initiatives, philanthropy and economic progress. Information about DTE is available at dteenergy.com, empoweringmichigan.com, twitter.com/dte_energy and facebook.com.

Pete Ternes
DTE Energy
313.235.5555