LANSING – The Michigan Energy Innovation Business Council (Michigan EIBC) praised the nominees and awardees for the 2016 Governor’s Energy Excellence Awards. The awards recognize individuals and organizations in the public and private sector for their extraordinary efforts to reduce energy waste. The winners were announced by Gov. Rick Snyder during a ceremony at Michigan State University in East Lansing.
One of the finalists for “Innovator of the Year” was John Slagter of Michigan EIBC member company, Mackinac Technology Company out of Grand Rapids. Slagter and the company have been working to build a retrofit insulation system that would give windows the same insulation value as well-insulated walls while maintaining clear, unobstructed views. As a result, the U.S. Secretary of Energy recently announced that they had been awarded a $2.5 million contract from Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy to complete development and bring Jon’s product to market. It has the potential to reduce energy usage in buildings by 60 percent.
“The focus on innovation will make Michigan’s energy future more secure and reliable as we incorporate improvements to technology,” said Liesl Eichler Clark, Michigan EIBC president and Michigan Energy Excellence steering committee member. “Advanced technology supports the transition to a cleaner grid.”
Winners of the Governor’s Energy Excellence Awards by category are:
- Best Commercial Project (Private)
- Odawa Casino Resort, Little Traverse Bay Bands of Odawa Indians, Petoskey
- Best Commercial Project (Public)
- Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo
- Best Residential Project
- Michael Eick, Clinton Township
- Best Industrial/Manufacturing Project
- Cargill Inc. — Cargill Salt, St. Clair
- Best Agriculture Project
- Weiss Centennial Farms, Frankenmuth
- Contractor of the Year
- Oscar W. Larson Company, Clarkston
- Best Communication or Education Program
- Habitat for Humanity of Kent County, Grand Rapids
- Innovator of the Year
- Dennis Schultz — Terra Caloric, Alpena
Energy waste reduction is a fast growing industry in Michigan. A recent report from Clean Energy Trust with help from Michigan EIBC noted that Michigan’s advanced energy industry supports over 87 thousand jobs in the state. More than half are workers in Michigan’s energy efficiency industry. Michigan is not just home to energy efficiency contractors, but developers like CLEAResult, Toggled and Bosch. Recognizing achievements like these not only support the awardees, but the entire supply chain in this state and the people they employ.