Mason County Planning Commission has approved the $232 million Consumers Energy Lake Winds Energy Park in Riverton and Summit townships. Economic impact studies show the project will create 150 jobs during peak construction and 8 to 12 full-time jobs during operation of the 100 MW wind farm that will produce enough power for 25,000 homes.
The total direct and indirect economic benefit to Mason County residents and businesses will be $33 million, a company study concluded. In addition, the study showed that over the next 20 years the county, townships and schools will receive a combined $29 million in taxes. http://www.mlive.com/business/west-michigan/index.ssf/2011/07/mason_county_planners_unanimou.html
Fourteen Michigan cities, villages and counties have received a total of $1,066,429 for advanced lighting technology projects from the Michigan Economic Development Corp. The grants were awarded from the Michigan Energy Office through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. http://detroit.cbslocal.com/2011/07/25/michigan-communities-receive-grants-for-advanced-lighting-technology/
Consumers Energy’s expanded Experimental Advanced Renewable Program (EARP) has been approved by the MPSC. Consumers proposed to add $16.5 million to the PV program with an additional $3.5 million for use in developing a methane digester program and potentially one or more provider-owned solar projects. The utility expects the expanded PV program to provide approximately 3 MW of additional solar installations over the next 4 years with contract terms of 15 years.
University of Michigan’s national champion solar car team conducted a 1,000-mile, four-day “mock race” with stops in St. Joseph, Ludington, Traverse City, Mackinaw City and Tawas City that simulated the mandatory control stops along their future Australian race route. http://solarcar.engin.umich.edu/news
City of Auburn Hills has passed Michigan’s first city ordinance regulating the installation of electric vehicle charging stations. Under the ordinance, those who want to install EV charging stations do not need any special zoning approval. As long as they follow industry standards, all they have to do is pull a building permit. http://detroit.cbslocal.com/2011/07/12/auburn-hills-passes-ordinance-to-encourage-ev-charging-stations/
DTE Energy has recycled 35,000 refrigerators and freezers since it began its program in 2009. DTE pays its customers $40 to recycle their old refrigerators and freezers. The appliances are taken apart at a recycling plant in Livonia, operated by Jaco Environmental. Ninety five percent of the materials in the refrigerators are recycled, and various hazardous materials are properly handled. www.YourEnergySavings.com http://detroit.cbslocal.com/2011/07/18/dte-energy-recycles-35000th-refrigerator/
8887 MW’s is new record high set by Consumers Energy on July 21. That was the highest level of demand in the utility’s 125 year history.
Vortex Hydro Energy has one prototype out of the water and is preparing to sink another one next year. The UoM spin-out is developing a device that harnesses the power in river currents through vortex-induced vibration. Water current flows around cylinders, inducing transverse motion, which is then turned into electricity. The six-year-old start-up tested a prototype of its technology in the St. Clair River last year. Their next generator will be in the water sometime next year. Vortex Hydro Energy is aiming to commercialize this technology by 2014. http://www.vortexhydroenergy.com/
General Motors Ventures has made an equity investment of $7.5 million in Sunlogics, a vertically integrated PV systems provider specializing in project development and installation. The investment will create 310 jobs, 200 of them in the Detroit area. GM also signed agreements with Sunlogics for the installation of solar charging canopies at 3,000 Chevrolet dealerships and other GM buildings, as well as a power purchase agreement to install large-scale solar arrays at GM buildings. http://detroit.cbslocal.com/2011/07/28/gm-investing-in-solar-power-firm-creating-200-jobs-in-rochester-hills/
Mississauga-based installer Solar & Alternative Technology (S.A.T.) has partnered with solar panel manufacturer Soventix Canada and Hiram Walker to build a 7.9 MW project, the largest rooftop PV project to be built in Ontario under the Feed-in Tariff program.
S.A.T. and Soventix Canada have entered into a 20-year lease agreement with the Canadian whisky distiller to rent the roof surfaces of its Pike Creek warehouse. http://www.renewablesbiz.com/article/11/07/one-worlds-largest-rooftop-solar-photovoltaic-projects-be-constructed-windsor-ontario
Buildings R&D Breakthroughs, May 2011 DOE report, identifies and characterizes commercially available products and emerging technologies that benefited from DOE support. http://www.fedcenter.gov/Announcements/index.cfm?id=18734
Renewable Energy Production has surpassed nuclear energy production in the U.S. according to the Energy Information Administration. During the first three months of 2011, energy produced from renewable energy sources (biomass/biofuels, geothermal, solar, hydro, wind) generated 2.245 quadrillion Btus of energy equating to 11.73% of U.S. energy production. During this same time period, renewable energy production surpassed nuclear energy power by 5.65%. http://domesticfuel.com/2011/07/05/renewable-energy-production-surpasses-nuclear/
National University Clean Energy Business Challenge will encourage entrepreneurship in clean energy nationwide. $2 million in available funding will create a network of regional, student-focused clean energy business competitions whose winners will compete for a National Grand Prize in early summer 2012. ttp://apps1.eere.energy.gov/news/progress_alerts.cfm/pa_id=576
Japan has the greatest number of vending machines in the world. In April this year, the Democratic Party of Japan proposed an ordinance to regulate the electricity consumption of vending machines, but withdrew it after beverage manufacturers set up a voluntary arrangement to shut off the vending machine cooling systems on a rotating schedule. Coca-Cola has implemented this arrangement on 250,000 vending machines since the end of June, and reports that it can save about 33% of electricity consumption.
Great Lakes Bay Wind Energy Summit will be held on Thursday, August 4 at Saginaw Valley State University, in Curtiss Hall. Learn how you can participate in the growing wind industry, as a supplier of products or services. http://www.svsu.edu/cbed/cmi/wind-summit-2011.html
Solar Energy and the Michigan Workforce conference will be held on August 15, 8:45 am-5:00 pm at Northwestern Michigan College, Aero Park Campus. NMC and the Midwest Solar Training Network are hosting the one day conference dedicated to expanding solar education. www.nmc.edu/energy
NABCEP PV Installer Certification Exam Prep Class will be held on August 25-26 at MAREC in Muskegon. Fee is $595.www.gvsu.edu/marec
Oakland University SBA-SECS is offering an Energy Management Certificate Program. It is a six week program designed for busy professionals that will start September 16 and be held on Fridays & Saturdays, 9 am- 5 pm. Registration is underway. Visit: www.oakland.edu\energymgmt or contact: Maureen Callaghan, Professional Development Coordinator by phone: 248-412-3235 or email: email@example.com
Great Lakes Wind Collaborative 4th Annual Meeting will be held Sept. 19-22 at the Ann Arbor Ypsilanti Marriott Eagle Crest Resort. The event starts September 19 with a pre-meeting fieldtrip followed by two-and-a-half days of informative panel presentations and discussion, breakout sessions and a reception. http://www.glc.org/energy/wind/conf2011.html
First Annual Detroit Green Miles Festival will be held at Belle Isle’s lighthouse on Friday, September 23 and Saturday, September 24 from 10am-8pm. In addition to exhibits, presentations, food, and kids activities, a Green Jobs fair will kick off the event on Friday beginning at 10am. www.DetroitGreenMileFestival.org
Michigan Wind Working Group will hold a quarterly meeting on Sept. 27, 1:00-4:30 at the Michigan Public Service Commission, Hearing Room A. All interested parties are welcome. http://www.michigan.gov/mpsc/0,1607,7-159-16393_55246-136909–,00.html
2011 Annual Sustainability Conference will be held by Michigan Interfaith Power & Light and Center for Sustainability at Aquinas College at the Grand Rapids campus on October 5. www.miipl.org
Michigan Women of Wind Energy (WOWE) next meeting will be held on Wednesday, October 5, 6:00 pm at Stork Climax Research Services in Wixom. Look forward to an expert panel discussion on Building a Wind Farm.
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Source/Prepared by: John Sarver for Great Lakes Renewable Energy Association (GLREA)