“[R]ather than moving residents away from burning fossil fuels for home energy, DTE Energy is looking to transition rural Michigan homes and businesses from propane to fossil gas, or “natural gas”, and use a state “low carbon” grant program to do so.
The company requested a total of $26.19 million in taxpayer dollars through a state grant program to expand gas service into counties in west and northwest Michigan, as well as Delta County in the Upper Peninsula….
Advocates say DTE’s proposals ignore the benefits of building electrification, which could protect customers from volatile gas prices, reduce indoor air pollution associated with asthma and other health problems, and help the state meet the goals laid out in the MI Healthy Climate Plan, which looks to reduce emissions from buildings by 17% by 2030.
Consumers Energy came in for similar criticism for proposals to use $28.29 million in grant money for biogas or “renewable natural gas” projects. These would build four biogas facilities at large dairy and beef farms.
A Michigan Public Service Commission report found that biogas (also known as “renewable natural gas”) could replace only a fraction of Michigan’s fossil gas use and cut just up to 5% of carbon pollution statewide.”
Read the full article by Brian Allnutt at Planet Detroit