Newsletter: Conference Recap and More

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:


12th Annual Michigan Energy Innovators Conference Held in East Lansing

Thank you to all who attended the 12th Annual Michigan Energy Innovators Conference this week! We had an incredible lineup of panels (see below), and a stirring keynote speech from Paula R. Glover, president of the Alliance to Save Energy.

Ms. Glover drew a surprising parallel between the two passions of her life: hip-hop and energy efficiency. Just as hip-hop has infused itself into the culture so completely that many people do not even notice how transformative it has been, “efficiency is also infused into our energy industry in a way that people really don’t know,” she said. Efficiency is the largest employer in the energy sector at 2.1 million jobs and efficiency’s jobs exist in 97% of the counties in this country, she said.

Glover described the role of efficiency as enabling almost every step of the clean energy transition, from rooftop solar to electrification. An example is the Inflation Reduction Act’s Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund, which is giving grants to rooftop solar in low-income and disadvantaged communities, but with requirements that lock in energy efficiency improvements. “Before you spend a dime on installing rooftop solar… you make sure the envelope whether it’s a residential building or a small commercial building is as efficiency as it can possibly can be,” Glover said, and doing that ensures that the problem of high energy cost burden in disadvantaged communities is dealt with at the same time as rooftop solar is expanded.

The Alliance to Save Energy has started a historically black college and university (HBCUs) modernization initiative, which looks to use Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund grants to upgrade HBCUs and confront their problem of over $400 million in deferred maintenance, Glover said.

“Do not let the weight of what has to happen – of this climate crisis, of this just transition, of all of it – take away from the joy of this moment. These are huge opportunities to make transformative changes. We get the opportunity to employ lots of people and we get the opportunity to allow people to start really great small businesses and create wealth,” she said.

Thank you to all moderators and panelists that made this year’s conference so special!

Mainstage Panel: Power for All: Ensuring Equal Access to Solar Energy
Moderator: Cory Connolly, Michigan EGLE

  • Erica Mackie, Grid Alternatives
  • Rachel Edwards-Mosby, Polar Bear SEC 
  • Sarah Moon, Fieldworks Power, LLC

Mainstage Panel: The Clean Energy Jobs Act: Cementing Michigan’s Clean Energy Leadership
Moderator: Justin Carpenter, Michigan EIBC

  • Kara Cook, Michigan EGLE
  • Chair Dan Scripps, Michigan Public Service Commission
  • Sen. Sam Singh, Michigan Senate

Panel: Energy Sovereignty for Indigenous Lands
Moderator: Michael Larson, Michigan Energy Options

  • Bob Blake, Native Sun
  • Kevin Blaser, Migizi Economic Development Company

Panel: Do Smart Grids Dream of Electric Sheep: Utilizing Data to Manage Loads and Modernize the Grid
Moderator: Judd Herzer, Michigan State University

  • Anne Lenzen, Oracle
  • Robert Roseman, Schneider Electric
  • Joshua Williams, Highland Electric 

Panel: Shifting the Siting Paradigm: Supporting Communities, the Industry and Farmers
Moderator: Valerie Brader, Rivenoak Consulting, Inc.

  • Mike Byrne, Michigan Public Service Commission
  • Will Frost, East Point Energy
  • Dr. Sarah Mills, University of Michigan
  • Patti Shinn, Bob Shinn Farms, LLC

Panel: Cold Climate Heat Pumps to Electrify Michigan Homes
Moderator: Molly Graham, Midwest Energy Efficiency Alliance

  • Dianna Cacko, Mitsubishi Electric Trane
  • Mark Lee, Better World Builders
  • Chris Neme, Energy Futures Group
  • Tony Tomczak, DTE Energy

Panel: Leading the Midwest: Growing Michigan’s Clean Energy Leadership
Moderator: Liesl Clark, University of Michigan

  • Hilary Doe, Michigan Economic Development Corp.
  • Derrick Meeking, Walker-Miller Energy Services
  • Pagan Poggione, Interstate Renewable Energy Council
  • Glenn Stevens, MICHauto

Panel: Electrify the Damn Roads: Getting to 100,000 EV Chargers
Moderator: Jane McCurry, Clean Fuels Michigan

  • Jason Gies, ABB E-mobility
  • Emily Kelly, ChargePoint
  • Justine Johnson, State of Michigan, Office of Future Mobility and Electrification
  • Jeffrey Myrom, Consumers Energy

Session: Short Talks, Big Ideas

  • Dr. Annick Anctil, Michigan State University
  • Komal Doshi, Walker-Miller Energy Services
  • Commissioner Katherine Peretick, Michigan Public Service Commission
  • Theodora Okiro Quarles, EcoHealth Strategies
  • Dr. E’Lois Thomas, SEEL

Thank you sponsors!








Michigan Gets $156 Million for Low-Income Solar from EPA Grant

Earlier this week the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced that it will grant more than $156 million to the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy (EGLE) through the Solar for All competition for solar projects in low-income and disadvantaged communities. The Solar for All competition is part of the Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund, which was created by the Inflation Reduction Act and authorized $7 billion to “enable low-income and disadvantaged communities to deploy or benefit from zero-emission technologies, including distributed technologies on residential rooftops, and to carry out other greenhouse gas emission reduction activities.”

With this grant, the state plans “to establish specific criteria for financial and technical assistance that best serves Michigan households, maximizes the use of complementary public and private funding sources to support residential rooftop installation, storage, and upgrades for homes in need” and create “a sustainable program to deploy solar across the state” that “fosters a more equitable energy transition for Michigan,” according to the EPA’s Solar for All site.

The EPA announced 49 state-level Solar for All grants this week, along with six tribal awards and five multi-state awards, all together totaling about $7 billion.

Michigan Energy News

National Energy News

  • New Biden administration rules to limit carbon emissions from power plants may work as a “backstop” for the incentives found in the Inflation Reduction Act, according to experts.
  • Midcontinent Independent System Operator capacity prices triple for next summer and spring based on the results of a planning resource auction.
  • The U.S. offshore wind industry is at an “inflection point” to go from its first phase of development to its second, according to a new U.S. Department of Energy report.

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.

5 Lakes Energy

Summer Intern. Location: Remote.

5 Lakes Energy is looking for flexible and self-motivated interns at the advanced undergraduate or graduate level interested in climate and energy policy. 5LE’s work is rooted in quantitative analysis, and applicants should expect that most projects will require some degree of technical analysis, with Excel as our primary analytical tool. 

This year, 5LE is offering 3 opportunities –

  • Building a Year-long Hourly Power Demand Forecast to Support Widespread Electrification of Michigan’s Manufacturers mentored by Elizabeth Boatman, Ph.D., Consultant 
  • Public Sector Clean Energy Research Assistant mentored by Rick Bunch, Senior Consultant
  • Developing a Python-based Integrated Resource Planning Model mentored by Eli Gold, Senior Consultant

To learn more about these opportunities and to apply, please review the information in this document.


Stakeholder Relations Advisor. Location: Remote (Indiana, Michigan).

The Stakeholder Relations Advisor will work within AES Clean Energy’s Stakeholder Relations team in the central US, specifically MISO North, to include Minnesota, Iowa, Wisconsin, Michigan, Indiana and other states, as assigned. This is an exciting opportunity to have a career in industry-leading engagement strategies to empower communities and advance a carbon-free future. This role will support AES’ strategic renewable energy-related stakeholder engagement, local community relations, drafting communications and collateral materials for strategic planning and social impact partnership development. This role will report to the Manager of Stakeholder Relations MISO. 


Senior Associate, Talent Acquisition. Location: Chicago/Remote.

The Senior Associate, Talent Acquisition supports the recruiting cycle from candidate sourcing and evaluation to closing of all positions for Elevate. The position is a recruiting business partner, supports the front-end recruitment strategy, integrates a focus on diversity sourcing and recruitment that includes sourcing candidates through a variety of channels, plans interviews and selection procedures, and hosts or participates in career events.


Michigan and National Energy Events

Join Michigan EGLE for the 2024 Michigan Healthy Climate Conference at the Lansing Center on May 16-17Register here.

Get tickets for Michigan EIBC and Michigan EGLE’s Public Convening on Microgrids on May 22 in Grand Rapids.



Michigan EGLE is launching the Renewables Ready Communities Award (RRCA), which makes Michigan municipalities that have, on or after October 1, 2023, begun physically hosting and performing local permitting for any portion of an eligible renewable energy project eligible for awards of $5,000 per MW. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis until Sept. 30. More information on this opportunity can be found on the RRCA Webpage.

The Michigan Public Service Commission has created a website tracking its progress implementing Public Acts 229, 231, 233, 234, and 235, passed on Nov. 8, 2023 and signed by Governor Gretchen Whitmer on Nov. 28.

The MPSC has posted for public review all the applications it has received in response to a request for proposals for funding through a renewable energy and electrification infrastructure enhancement and development grant program. The final deadline for proposals is April 29.

The U.S. Department of Energy has issued a funding opportunity announcement for grants to “fund research, development, and prototype or pilot scale technology validation and demonstration activities that will accelerate the development and adoption of sustainable technologies that increase efficiency and eliminate industrial GHG emissions for the most energy- and emissions- intensive industrial subsectors.” The deadline is June 11Learn more here,

Michigan EGLE is offering at least $320,000 in funding MI Solar Communities-MI Solar Access Program. Applications will be accepted through March 31, 2025, or when funding is expended, whichever comes first. Find the request for proposals for MI Solar Access here.