Newsletter: What Michigan EIBC did in the first quarter of 2017

This newsletter was originally published on December 1, 2017.

As the end of the year approaches, Michigan EIBC will take a look back at what the organization and members have accomplished this year. Over the month of December, the newsletter will take you through the highlights of 2017. This week covers the first quarter.



In January, Michigan EIBC expanded the initiative approach to dig deeper into specific industry segments with increased focus on policy and market needs. Early on, there were discussions with the corporate purchasers roundtable and a deep dive into solar policy in Michigan for members only.

Near the end of the month, Michigan EIBC co-hosted the Institute for Energy Innovation’s Energy 101 event in Lansing, an educational panel for legislators on issues of advanced energy. Energy 101 and the following reception was well-attended by legislators, MPSC commissioners and staff, and Michigan EIBC members and provided an opportunity for networking and collaboration between the groups. House Energy Chairman Gary Glenn gave the luncheon keynote presentation and spoke about the increasing demand from corporate purchasers for renewable energy and his interest in removing red tape for solar.

Michigan EIBC’s members were active as well:



February kicked off with a Michigan Energy Forum at Varnum Law, and later in the month Liesl attended a UP Energy Summit in Marquette.

Michigan EIBC also made the news in February. On February 7, EIBC released a report showing massive job growth in the Michigan solar industry. Michigan EIBC President Liesl Eichler Clark was featured on Michigan Public Radio’s The Next Idea program on February 27, highlighting the role energy efficiency can play in meeting Michigan’s energy need. And on February 28, Michigan EIBC sent out a press release applauding the MPSC’s announcement of an EV technical conference.

In February, Michigan EIBC continued the initiative discussions — corporate purchasers and energy efficiency strategy call.

In member news, Michigan EIBC member Siemens partnered with battery start-up Eos on a new zinc hybrid cathode technology that it is selling at $160/ kWh, plus the cost of inverters and installation.



In March, Michigan EIBC assisted with the release of the Clean Jobs Midwest report, and celebrated Michigan’s 87,000 clean energy jobs.

In March, Michigan EIBC attended the DC Power Forward event hosted by Advanced Energy Economy. The MI contingent including joint AEE-Michigan EIBC member companies Apex Clean Energy, CLEAResult, FirstFuel, Oracle, and others, met with more than half of the Michigan congressional delegation, including meetings with Congressman Jack Bergman (R-Watersmeet), Congressman John Moolenaar (R-Midland), and Congressman Dan Kildee (D-Flint Township), as well as staff with Senators Debbie Stabenow and Gary Peters and Congressman Tim Walberg (R-Tipton), Congressman David Trott (R-Birmingham), and Congresswoman Debbie Dingell (D-Dearborn) on Michigan’s advanced energy policies.

Michigan EIBC Board Member Scott Viciana of Ventower Industries was invited by AEE to speak at Power Forward in DC. Viciana outlined Ventower’s approach to working with local lawmakers, specifically Michigan State Senator Dale Zorn, to see an expansion of Michigan’s Renewable Portfolio Standard included in the energy legislation signed by Governor Snyder in December. Viciana shared the importance of developing relationships with local elected officials with a group of approximately 100 industry executives.

And Michigan EIBC President Liesl Eichler Clark spoke on a panel on innovation at the MSU Institute for Public Utilities’ Michigan Forum on Economic Regulatory Policy.

Michigan EIBC members were very active in March:


New Members:

Wind Secure specializes in inspecting, maintaining, repairing and protecting wind turbine foundations throughout the United States. Our patented process unlocks valuable data found within the foundation anchor bolts. We also specialize in corrosion protection by providing the best sprays, greases, coatings and anchor bolt covers that are available on the market.


Renewing Members:

Oracle Utilities helps electric, gas and water utilities worldwide enhance the customer experience, increase operational efficiency and achieve performance excellence.  We work with more than 2600 utilities around the world, including the largest utilities in the United States. As the largest provider of cloud services in the utility industry, our software enables our clients to adapt more nimbly to the complex, evolving utilities future.

With the April 2016 acquisition of Opower, Oracle Utilities incorporates cutting edge behavioral energy efficiency, behavioral demand response, and customer engagement capabilities. To date, these programs have resulted in over seventeen terawatt-hours of cost-effective energy savings and enabled over $2 billion in customer bill savings.



Michigan Energy News Clips:


National Energy News Clips:

  • Over 75% of Americans want to phase out coal power and believe the U.S. should be ambitious about producing clean energy, according to the largest-ever global survey on renewable energy.
  • This week, the EPA set quotas for how much renewable fuel must be blended into the national gasoline supply.
  • After a the House version of a tax overhaul bill threatened wind energy credits, advocates are turning to the Senate in hope of preserving them.
  • The Senate Appropriations Committee’s spending bill would cut $150 million from the EPA, and the House version of the bill would cut even more.
  • The U.S. International Trade Commission made its case for imposing solar tariffs in an official report, which has been sent to President Trump.
  • Republican Senator of Maine Susan Collins is expected to oppose President Donald Trump’s nominee to lead the EPA’s chemical safety office, Michael Dourson. Along with North Carolina Republican Senators. Thom Tillis and Richard Burr, Collins’ vote would block the confirmation.
    An airport in Cedar Rapids, Iowa has taken up multiple clean energy projects to reduce costs.
  • Critics say a plan by grid operator PJM would favor coal and nuclear plants by allowing them to help set electricity prices on the wholesale market.
  • Michigan EIBC member company Invenergy’s third wind farm in an Iowa county is in the works.
  • The EPA will not make major changes to federal rules on ethanol blending into gasoline.
    Researchers predict that wave energy converters moored along coastal regions of the U.S. will be providing power to millions of homes in coming decades.
  • Scientists have moved one step closer to developing an innovative LED light source.
  • BMW announced a plan to switch all of its external power sources to renewables by 2020 as the carmaker spends billions on electric vehicles.
  • Tesla finished construction on the world’s largest lithium-ion battery at a wind farm in South Australia.
  • Connecticut will offer $2 million in additional funding to continue a rebate program for electric vehicles.
  • Mercedes-Benz will start offering electric vans in the second half of 2018.
  • Tesla unveiled its electric semi truck, which has 500-mile range and semi-autonomous capabilities.


Michigan Energy Events:

Michigan EIBC invites you to the CHP Tour & Roundtable in Partnership with the Institute for Energy Innovation and the University of Michigan Energy Institute. The CHP Tour & Roundtable is on December 11 in Ann Arbor. Register here.

Celebrate the biggest year of PACE yet with Lean & Green Michigan. You are invited to a holiday open house at the Levin Energy Partners office in Eastern Market on Thursday, December 14, in Detroit. Fun, food and beverages will be provided. RSVP here.


National Energy Events:
EUCI invites you to “An Introduction to Electric Utility Systems,” December 7 – 8 in San Diego, California. This seminar is targeted toward increasing the knowledge of non-technical staff who work or have an interest in the electric utility industry. Participants who are not familiar with utilities and electric power systems can significantly benefit from attending. Since this is a basic seminar, a prior background in electric utility systems or engineering is not expected or required. Register here.

EUCI invites you to the Electric Vehicle-Utility Industry Nexus on December 11-12 in Anaheim, California. This conference addresses critical considerations, opportunities and challenges regarding electric vehicles from the utility perspective. RSVP here.

The U.S. Energy Storage Summit 2017 is taking place December 12-13 in San Francisco. Now in its third year, this event brings together utilities, financiers, regulators, technology innovators, and storage practitioners for two full days of data-intensive presentations, analyst-led panel sessions with industry leaders, and extensive, high-level networking. Register here.

Registration is now open for the 2017 Veteran’s Energy Seminar on December 14 in Chicago. This one-day training for military veterans and reservists will include classroom sessions and panels on global energy security challenges. Learn more and register here.

The 2nd Smart Cities International Symposium and Exhibition, January 17-18 in Chicago, brings together municipal professionals and thought leaders to explore technology advances and key lessons to date in achieving the Smart City vision. Register here.

Mark your calendar for the 5th National Conference on Next Generation Demand Response on February 7-8, in San Diego, California. Learn more and register here.

With more than 650 attendees, MES is the region’s largest energy efficiency event and an unparalleled networking opportunity. February 7-9, MEEA will be holding their annual 2018 Midwest Energy Solutions Conference at the Chicago Hilton & Towers. MES is about celebrating accomplishments in energy efficiency, as well as laying out the efficiency program and policy landscape for the coming year. Register here.