Newsletter: A Look Back At Accomplishments in 2023

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:


Read Dr. Sherman in Utility Dive About Michigan’s Historic New Energy Laws

Now that the governor has signed the clean energy bill package into law, folks are both excited about this victory and also wondering what’s next. In a new piece in Utility Dive, Dr. Sherman writes about some of the most important aspects of the new laws and about which policy areas will be most important as the laws are implemented.

“The laws are signed but the next question is: what will their legacy be? Can they achieve their goals of helping Michigan, a state that was mostly reliant on coal-fired power just a few years ago, get to a carbon-free grid?,” she writes. Distributed generation–specifically, the need for additional laws to further expand Michigan’s market–and the proper implementation of the new procedures for approving the siting of utility-scale renewable energy projects will be significant factors in deciding this legacy.

Read the whole piece here.

A Look Back at Michigan EIBC’s Accomplishments in 2023

This past year will be looked back on as a historic one for Michigan energy policy. It was also a year where Michigan EIBC welcomed 43 new members, bringing our membership to a total of more than 160 advanced energy companies. Here is a look back at some of the highlights from this year:


We successfully advocated to pass 11 bills into law representing many top Michigan EIBC
priorities. These included:

  • Clarifying, standardizing, and streamlining taxation for utility-scale solar projects >2MW in capacity with a new payment in lieu of taxes system (PA 108 and PA 109)
  • Ensuring more businesses are able to undertake energy efficiency upgrades using commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy (C-PACE) financing (PA 106 and PA 107)
  • Setting a 50% renewable portfolio standard by 2030, 60% by 2035, and 100% clean energy standard by 2040; increasing the distributed generation cap and lifting the system size cap; setting a 2,500 MW energy storage mandate; increasing energy waste reduction standards and incentives; and allowing natural gas to electric fuel switching (PA 235PA 229, and PA 231)
  • Streamlining decisions on permitting for large utility-scale wind, solar, and storage projects to ensure that projects meet robust statewide standards but are not held up by local roadblocks (PA 233 and PA 234)
  • Codifying current state policy developed in 2019 in partnership with Michigan EIBC to allow solar on farmland enrolled in the Farmland Preservation Program (PA 230)
  • Codifying decisions from the Michigan Public Service Commission to allow electric vehicle chargers to sell electricity on a per kWh basis, enabling Michigan to capture federal funding (PA 245)

In addition, Michigan EIBC President Laura Sherman, Senior Director of Policy Grace Michienzi and Director of Policy Justin Carpenter, as well as many representatives from Michigan EIBC member companies, frequently testified before Michigan Senate and House legislative committees. A few examples include Scott Viciana, VP of Sales and Business Development for Michigan EIBC member Ventower Industries, testifying alongside Carpenter before the House Energy, Communications and Technology Committee about the siting legislation, Michienzi and Carpenter testifying before the Senate Energy and Environment Committee in support of new versions of the clean energy standard and energy waste reduction legislation and Sherman testifying before the House Committee on Tax Policy about the solar payment in lieu of taxes legislation.


We continued to be a thought leader in energy policy. Most recently, see this new Utility Dive article from Dr. Sherman discussed in this newsletter above.  We also published other articles in the media like:

  • Early this year, before the ultimately successful energy bill package was introduced, in Bridge magazine, Dr. Sherman laid out a strategy for Lansing lawmakers that brings together renewable energy, energy storage, electric vehicles, energy efficiency and more.
  • An increasing number of new EV models have vehicle-to-grid (V2G) capability, but utilities are not yet taking the steps needed to take advantage of this tremendous storage resource, Dr. Sherman wrote in Utility Dive.
  • The need for reforming the laws around community solar is urgent, Dr. Sherman wrote in Renewable Energy World in March. “Solar power is on the precipice of a major transformation,” she writes, with billions of dollars in grants created by the Inflation Reduction Act to soon be distributed to community solar projects around the country by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
  • In an op-ed in the Detroit News published in June, Dr. Sherman wrote about the connection between the unprecedented clean energy legislation being considered in the state and the uproar over power outages in Michigan this year.
  • Proposed bills in the state House amount to “some of the boldest state-level policies for energy storage in the entire country,” Dr. Sherman wrote in a July article in PV Magazine
  • Clean energy and agriculture are natural allies and can build on their mutually beneficial relationship with the passage of legislation to streamline the siting of renewable energy projects, Carpenter wrote in Bridge magazine shortly before that legislation was indeed passed.

Executive, Regulatory and Public and Member Engagement

  • In collaboration with Michigan EIBC member 5 Lakes Energy for Evergreen Collaborative, we published the Michigan Clean Energy Framework modeling report, which identified economic benefits of state-level clean energy policy and was cited in public statements from the Whitmer administration.
  • We successfully coordinated with the Governor’s office and legislators to include funding for EV school buses, state fleet EV transition, weatherization, and more in the FY24 state budget.
  • Our 11th Annual Conference in April in East Lansing hosted over 250 attendees, while our 11th Annual Gala in September in Detroit hosted over 200.
  • In collaboration with Advanced Energy United, we released two reports for governors and utility regulators on federal opportunities from the federal Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) and Inflation Reduction Act (IRA).
  • We intervened and fully participated in a number of contested cases at the Michigan Public Service Commission. For example, in the DTE IRP case, Michigan EIBC achieved a significant increase in the distributed generation cap, increased procurement of wind, solar, and storage assets, guaranteed procurement of third-party owned resources, and improvements in competitive procurement for demand response assets.


Lean & Green Michigan Awards Michigan EIBC As ‘Most Valuable PACEsetter’

At Lean & Green Michigan’s Annual Holiday Party, Michigan EIBC member Lean & Green presented Michigan EIBC with an award for “2023 Most Valuable PACEsetter.” This award was in recognition for our work helping get legislation passed to expand C-PACE financing.

“Michigan EIBC is grateful to our member, Lean & Green Michigan, for this award and recognition. We are thrilled to have assisted in passing legislation that will make commercial PACE financing more accessible to Michigan property owners and promote energy efficiency in our state,” Dr. Sherman said in a statement.

Thank you to Lean & Green President and General Counsel Todd Williams and the Lean & Green Michigan team for the recognition!

Michigan Energy News

  • MPSC Chair Dan Scripps says in an interview with the Detroit News that due to the new siting law he expects several renewable energy projects that were blocked by local ordinances to come before the MPSC for consideration. 
  • DTE and Consumers Energy could be putting ratepayers on the hook to pay for today’s storm damage for decades, Bridge reports.
  • The energy bill package recently signed by Gov. Whitmer represents “a major win for environmental justice, hard-hit communities and workers,” Sierra Club Executive Director Ben Jealous writes.
  • Evergreen Action interviews Rep, Sam Singh and Michigan-based environmental justice organizer Angana Shah about the clean energy bill package.
  • Some are hailing a Detroit wireless EV charging track as a milestone.

National Energy News

  • Generation from solar and wind power combined will surpass generation from coal-fired power plants in 2024, the U.S. Energy Information Administration forecasts.
  • Lithium-ion battery prices are falling again after a pause in the trend of price declines following the pandemic.
  • Mid-Atlantic grid operator PJM Interconnection approves $5 billion in new transmission lines to meet expected demand from new data centers planned in Virginia and Maryland.
  • There is a rising risk of blackouts due to the planned retirements of 83 GW of fossil and nuclear power plants over the next 10 years, according to the annual Long-Term Reliability Assessment from the North American Electric Reliability Corp.
  • Michigan EIBC member Meta signs an agreement to buy solar energy from Michigan EIBC member Ørsted’s 300-MW project in Arizona to power a data center.


Job Board

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 Please include in the email a specific end date for the job posting.

Advanced Energy United

Policy Director – Decision Maker Education & Engagement – Central. Location: Remote.

Advanced Energy United is currently seeking an experienced, strategic and innovative Director to focus on decision maker education and engagement in central states. The Director will work with other United team members to develop and implement educational strategies designed to achieve policy successes at the state level that will expand markets for the advanced energy industry and accelerate the U.S. transition to 100% clean energy.

Policy Director – Decision Maker Education & Engagement – West. Location: Remote.

Advanced Energy United is currently seeking an experienced, strategic and innovative Director to focus on decision maker education and engagement in western states. The Director will work with other United team members to develop and implement educational strategies designed to achieve policy successes at the state level that will expand markets for the advanced energy industry and accelerate the U.S. transition to 100% clean energy. 


Senior Program Manager, Michigan Justice 40 Accelerator. Location: Michigan, Hybrid.

Elevate’s Senior Program Manager, Michigan Justice 40 Accelerator supports Elevate’s mission by leading equity-focused programs and projects that support building the capacity of community-based organizations to implement community-driven climate solutions. The Senior Program Manager collaborates across the organization as well as with key partner organizations, public sector partners. The Senior Program Manager will serve as the primary point of contact for the MI Justice40 Accelerator cohort members on their journey of federal funding readiness and implementation.

Energy Project Manager, Community Programs (MI). Location: Southeast Michigan.

The Technical Project Manager, Community Programs (MI) leads the implementation of projects and small programs, maintains client relationships, and assists with program development for specific initiatives related to affordable housing and sustainable communities with an emphasis on energy and water efficiency and renewable energy. Many projects focus on utility affordability, building decarbonization, renewable energy access, climate planning, and/or community resilience. This position requires some technical background in building science, construction management, energy auditing, energy engineering, or other related analytical expertise.


The City of Grand Rapids has released a Request for Information/Request for Qualifications related to its plan to develop solar on the Butterworth Landfill. Responses are due Dec. 29, 2023.

The U.S. Department of Energy’s Industrial Efficiency and Decarbonization Office has announced a $38 million funding opportunity focused on cross-sector technologies for industrial decarbonization. Applications are due March 20Learn more here.

The Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE) has several open grant applications related to energy efficiency for businesses, local governments, tribal governments and farmers, as well as support for public, private, or nonprofit entities for deploying publicly available fast-charging electric vehicle stations along the Lake Michigan Circuit. These applications have various deadlines from January to March of 2024Find more information here.

The Detroit Area Advocacy Organizations are seeking a qualified and experienced partner to oversee the management, disbursement, and evaluation of $8 million in settlement funds related to DTE Energy’s 2022 Integrated Resource Plan. A Request for Proposals from potential partners is available, and the deadline for submissions is Jan. 19.