DTE Energy has filed an application with the Michigan Public Service Commission to build a 1,100 MW natural gas fired power project in East China Township, Mich.
DTE says the nearly $1 billion project will cost about $860/kW to build and is scheduled to begin construction in 2019.
- The project is part of DTE’s wider effort to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 30% by the early part of the next decade and by more than 80% by 2050.
As part of a shift to a greener portfolio mix, DTE Energy is embracing natural gas. Last summer, DTE said it planned to replace 11 of its 17 coal-fired units over the next seven years as part of that shift.
The new gas plant is scheduled to operating in 2022 and will offset the scheduled retirement of three coal plants — in River Rouge, St. Clair and Trenton Channel — slated for 2020-2023.
DTE also aims to cut its CO2 emissions by adding 4,000 MW of renewable energy from wind and solar farms, transitioning to gas from coal generation, continuing the operation of its Fermi 2 plant, and with continuing programs that let customers to cut energy usage.
"A fundamental transformation in the way we produce power in Michigan has already begun,” Trevor Lauer, DTE Electric president and COO, said in a statement. “Natural gas-fired plants will be a critical part of our power generation capacity in the decades ahead.”
But building a natural gas plant to replace shuttered coal units has met some road bumps in other states. Xcel faced pushback from clean energy advocates in Minnesota for its proposal to offset the closure of two coal units with a mixture of natural gas and renewable energy. Advocates by and large supported the proposal, but expressed doubts over Xcel's investment in natural gas.