- Newsletter (395)
Welcome to the weekly newsletter of the Michigan Energy Innovation Business Council (Michigan EIBC), the business voice for advanced energy in Michigan. Here’s what’s new this week:
GM Announces Landmark EV Expansion as Governor’s Address Goes All-In on EVs
The announcement this week by Michigan EIBC member General Motors to invest $7 billion into four different manufacturing facilities to convert them to EV and EV-related production is a sign that “the future of the auto industry is being built here in Michigan,” Gov. Whitmer said in her State of the State address on Jan. 26.
Her speech focused on how Michiganders “get things done,” and she spoke from a venue that represents that spirit: the Daimler Trucks Detroit ePowertrain facility, known for making diesel engines but recently converted to produce EV truck components.
Her address centered around five proposals, with one centered on EVs. Whitmer proposed that the state create a $2,000 rebate for new EVs and $500 rebate for charging equipment, knocking $10,000 off the costs of going electric when combined with the $7,500 federal tax credit.
“Michigan Energy Innovation Business Council members are working across the transportation sector toward an electrified mobility future, and we are pleased to see these important proposals from Governor Whitmer,” Michigan EIBC President Laura Sherman said in a statement issued by the governor’s office. “Coupled with federal, state, and utility investments in electric vehicle charging infrastructure, these rebates will help customers make electric vehicle purchases, which will promote the advanced mobility shift while supporting and creating jobs.”
Michigan EIBC and ABATE in Bridge Magazine: Michigan Needs New Policies to Reach Net-Zero
Michigan EIBC and the Michigan Association of Businesses Advocating Tariff Equity (ABATE) have collaborated on an article in Bridge magazine about concerns important to both organizations: the ability of corporate customers to procure renewable energy and why it must be expanded for Michigan to stay economically competitive.
“In Michigan, even as the use of renewable energy has grown dramatically, our biggest energy users, like manufacturers, data centers, large retailers and more, cannot shift toward cleaner energy as easily as their peers can in other states,” Michigan EIBC President Laura Sherman and ABATE Executive Director Rod Williamson wrote in the article.
The reason is because companies operating in Michigan are limited in the green pricing programs they get from their utilities. In other parts of the country “companies like Alphabet and Microsoft are matching the output of the renewable energy they buy to the exact hours when they are using electricity,” they wrote, but such sophisticated strategies are difficult to pursue in Michigan.
Energy Storage Comes to the State Legislature
Energy storage is one of the fastest-growing fields in the advanced energy industry and will be critical for future reliability and resilience. Michigan EIBC members are helping educate state legislators about what storage can do and how to maximize its potential at two hearings of the Michigan House Energy Committee, one on Jan. 26 and another currently scheduled for February 2.
“This is all kind of brand-new stuff to me, so it feels like I am drinking from a firehose,” Rep. Pat Outman (R-District 70) said to Jamie Ann Marie O’Brien, chief technology officer for Michigan EIBC member Advanced Energy Storage, during O’Brien’s testimony at a Michigan House Energy Committee hearing on Jan. 26. Rep. Outman had a lot of questions for O’Brien about Advanced Energy Storage’s unique, non-battery storage technology involving compressed air and how this approach can shore up grid stability. O’Brien testified about how storage helps leverage skilled trade jobs in Michigan.
At the upcoming hearing, representatives of Michigan EIBC members Key Capture Energy, Form Energy and Invenergy are scheduled to testify, as is Michigan EIBC President Laura Sherman, who will talk about how policies like a statewide energy storage target, storage modeling requirements for utility integrated resource plans and programs to increase the storage workforce can unlock the economic potential of the many storage projects waiting to be built in the state.
Building on 25+ years experience in electrical system design and installation, FDS Engineering & Electrical Services began in 2014 with the vision to be a diverse electrical services provider. Since then we have grown our capabilities to become a unique combination of design expertise with extensive integration, testing and commissioning services. We provide turnkey systems from initial specification development through design, manufacturing, installation and start-up. We focus, or rather do not focus, our talents in both electrical power as well as controls/automation disciplines. Our customer base is unique as well, spanning multiple industries. This versatility allows us to bring fresh ideas to the table and continually exceed our customer’s expectations.
Key Capture Energy identifies, develops, constructs and operates energy storage solutions to foster greater deployment of renewable energy, create a more stable electric grid, and provide value to all ratepayers.
For virtually every important public policy issue—but especially in education, energy and the environment, health, and community and economic development—we are Michigan’s go-to public policy firm. We work closely with our clients to help them achieve innovative solutions to the problems they face. Sometimes clients look to us to conduct impartial research on tough topics. Sometimes they need us to implement and manage new programs. Sometimes they seek our facilitation skills on hot-button issues. Other times they want us to evaluate their programs and help make improvements. Whether our clients need one, some, or all of these services, our goal is to assist them in obtaining the best possible results.
McNaughton-McKay Electric Company is a leading distributor of electrical products for the industrial, automation, commercial, and construction markets. We opened in 1910 and are headquartered in Madison Heights, Michigan with 22 additional locations in 5 States and Germany. Each of our branch locations are committed to ensuring your needs are being met and we truly understand your business and industry goals.
Circle Power is a Michigan-based renewable energy development company focused on high value generation. Circle Power’s partners have over fifty years of collective experience during which they have been responsible for the development, construction or operation of several gigawatts of power projects and over three billion dollars of assets.
Michigan Energy News
- The Holland Sentinel reports on the Greenlink Analytics’ report and its findings that Michigan would see $7.70 in public benefits for every $1 invested in a clean energy scenario, and also quotes Michigan EIBC President Laura Sherman.
- The Greenlink report reveals how clean energy investment leads to better-paying jobs, which in turn have ripple effects across the economy, Sherman says in an MLive report.
- The effort to update Michigan’s building codes is leading to pushback from the homebuilding industry.
- LG Energy Solution’s plan to build a second EV battery factory in Holland is not yet a done deal as other parts of the country are competing for the facility.
- Wisconsin-based WEC Energy Group plans to test generating electricity with a hydrogen-natural gas blend at a power plant that serves the Upper Peninsula.
- DTE will expand its energy efficiency programs for low-income customers under the terms of a settlement agreement with several conservation groups including the Sierra Club.
National Energy News
- Michigan EIBC member Advanced Battery Concepts will supply its lead acid batteries to thousands of solar EV charging plazas being installed by GreenCore EV Services.
- The Biden administration is facing two potential inflection points when it comes to policy on solar panels.
- The natural gas industry is promoting “responsibly sourced” gas as a form of the fuel that is better for a low emissions future, but many observers are skeptical.
- Electric truck manufacturer Nikola is trying to emerge from turmoil through procurement deals with new fleet customers.
- The original form of energy storage, pumped hydro, “could be poised for a comeback,” Canary Media reports.
- A Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory study quantifies how much less land is required for growing amounts of solar power due to efficiency improvements.
Attention Michigan EIBC members: if you have a job announcement you would like in the newsletter, please send a paragraph describing the position and a link to apply to Matt Bandyk at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include in the email a specific end date for the job posting.
“We are looking for an experienced and talented Outreach Professional to lead the technical sales outreach effort to promote and increase participation in our energy efficiency utilities programs midstream (instant discount) and downstream residential and commercial. As an outreach professional for energy efficiency programs with Energy Sciences, you will join our team of degreed energy efficiency professionals helping utility customers take advantage of incentives to reduce energy use in residential and commercial buildings and industrial processes and plants.”
Lean & Green Michigan
Position: Associate Counsel, Detroit
Lean & Green Michigan is seeking a motivated and self-directed professional to join the team,
participating in all aspects of the administration of LAGM PACE districts in Michigan. The successful candidate may have experience with local governments, economic development, sales, real estate and/or environmental policy. Knowledge of renewable energy and energy efficiency, attention to detail, and enthusiasm for practicing law and helping deploy energy efficiency and renewable energy in Michigan are all preferred. The deadline for applications is Feb. 4. Send application materials to Lean & Green Michigan President and General Counsel Todd M. Williams at email@example.com.
“Support NextEnergy’s Mobility practice through the execution of programs designed to accelerate smart, clean, accessible solutions for communities and cities under the leadership of the Director, Technology Development. You’ll work with technology companies, business stakeholders, public agencies, and NextEnergy partners to launch and manage demonstrations of technologies that help demonstrate and commercialize next-generation mobility technologies and business models.”
Ranger Power is seeking an Assistant Development Manager to join its development team in its Chicago office. As part of a small and dynamic development team, assistant development managers are expected to manage varying responsibilities as projects progress through the development process. As a developer at Ranger Power, you will drive all aspects of project development and strategy, including site prospecting and land acquisition, site analysis, landowner relations, permitting, interconnection, business development, and community engagement and outreach.
SunPower is seeking a Senior Associate, Market Development and Policy, to advocate on SunPower’s behalf on state policy with various public service commissions, state legislatures, and state agencies to drive residential, commercial and community solar and energy storage adoption in the Midwest U.S., particularly in Illinois and Michigan. The successful candidate must be a self-starter, comfortable working remotely, and have experience navigating various regulatory dockets, reviewing public comments, and summarizing state legislation. Frequent travel within the Midwest region may be required at times. Location is flexible, although presence in Illinois is preferred.
Position: Construction Manager
Utopian Power is seeking a Construction Manager for our growing development company. The Construction Manager will be focused on all field related project delivery, including hands-on electrical work, contractor supervision and project related travel as required. The ideal candidate has solar installation expertise and the ability to manage multiple projects simultaneously. This position will have the ability to grow into a larger leadership position (if desired) with company and personal growth. Please send resume and interest to firstname.lastname@example.org. Job applications accepted until Feb. 4.
Michigan and National Energy Events
The 10th Annual Michigan Energy Innovators will be held April 26 at the Kellogg Conference Center at MSU in East Lansing. Information on speakers and registration will be announced soon.
American Electric Power (AEP) is issuing an RFP that “seeks up to 800 MW of Wind resources, 500 MW of Solar resources, and other qualified capacity resources from thermal, standalone storage, emerging technologies, and other capacity resources.” AEP subsidiary Indiana Michigan Power identified the need for supply-side generation in its RFP. The draft RFP will be released Jan. 28, and a pre-RFP stakeholder meeting will be held on Feb. 8. Here is the registration link for that meeting.
The Federal Highway Administration is seeking comments on the implementation of its EV Charging Program. Find more information here. Comments are due Jan. 28, 2022.
The Community Collaboration on Climate Change (C4) is seeking a full-time contract position to provide coordination of C4 leadership, organizational representatives, Grand Rapids residents, and the program deliverables.
State of Michigan DNR is going big in solar with projects in the ground, others in development and additional ones being planned. DNR has released a Request for Proposal for Prequalification Program for Renewable Energy PPAs: www.michigan.gov/sigmavss. Use “Guess Access” to get the RFP. A previous round of pre-qualifications netted solar companies that then were able to bid on a portfolio of DNR solar projects in Southwest Michigan. Another portfolio in the Northern Region is in the works for later this year. Only companies who pre-qualify can bid on future DNR solar projects. Please direct all correspondence to the Solicitation Manager, Laura Gyorkos at gyorkosL@michigan.gov.
The Michigan Economic Development Corporation’s PlanetM Testing Grant gives mobility companies the opportunity to access testing facilities around the state, including Mcity at the University of Michigan. Apply here.
The Detroit 2030 District is a free program that challenges Detroit building owners and managers to reduce wasted energy. Those that achieve the greatest reductions from the prior-year baseline will be recognized at the first annual Detroit Energy Challenge Award Ceremony in 2021. Visit 2030districts.org/Detroit to find out more information including how a building can apply.