Detroit Edison Adds Renewable Energy Option

Detroit Edison Adds Renewable Energy Option

Under a new, volunary program announced in time for Earth Day, DTE Energy's 2.2 million electric customers will have the option to choose environmentally friendly renewable energy for their homes and businesses.

"This coming Sunday, April 22, is Earth Day, and I can't think of a better time for DTE Energy to launch our GreenCurrents renewable energy program," said Trevor Lauer, vice president of marketing for DTE Energy. "For just a few dollars a month, our customers can help improve the environment, support the development of new renewable energy projects in Michigan, and help us meet the electricity demands of today without sacrificing the needs of future generations."

There are two options for residential customers under the GreenCurrents program: buy a block of 100 kilowatt-hours of renewable energy for $2.50 a month, or pay two cents per kilowatt-hour to offset their entire energy usage. DTE estimates a typical residential customer uses about 500 kwH per month.

Business customers can purchase a 1,000 kilowatt hour block of green energy for $20 a month -- or match all of their electricity usage with renewable power for an additional cost of two cents per kilowatt hour.

"Currently, renewable energy facilities are more costly to build, operate and maintain than conventional sources of electricity," Lauer said. "But as customers step forward and embrace renewable energy, demand will grow, more and more alternative energy facilities will be brought on line and costs should begin to come down.

The renewable energy will come primarily from Michigan-based sources, although as demand outstrips supply in the area, DTE said it will work to develop new sources of renewables and source energy from othe rregions.

With demand for electricity increasing and concern for the environment growing, renewable power will play an increasing role in meeting the future energy needs of Michigan and the nation, according to DTE Energy Chairman and CEO Anthony F. Earley.

"Some of our most important environmental questions center on the responsible use of energy," Earley said. "The challenge is striking the right balance between economic and environmental concerns as we work to make progress on both fronts. GreenCurrents is a step in the right direction, and a sound plan for the future."