- The Lansing Board of Water & Light (BWL) plans to mothball the coal-fired Erickson Power Plant in Delta Township in Michigan by 2025, according to a report in Lansing State Journal
- The plant is more than 50 years-old and will be replaced with a mix of renewables, efficiency and natural gas.
- The municipal utility plans to add 120 MW of solar power by 2030, and is targeting 40% clean energy in the same timeframe.
Following an agreement with the Sierra Club in 2015 that called for more than two dozen coal plant closures statewide, BWL has tagged another facility for retirement. Previously, the municipal utility indicated it would shutter the Eckhart plant by 2018, taking down six generating units located there.
Sierra Club's Regina Strong told the State Journal that plans to close Erickson have been a long time coming. "This is an opportunity for them to do the right thing, something we've been trying to get them to do all along," she said of the impending closure.
BWL has been working to clean up its energy mix. The utility's Lansing Energy Tomorrow plan calls for almost 85 MW wind to be added to its existing 20 MW, and the addition of 120 MW of solar by 2030. Along with that, the utility will install gas-fired generation "to keep rates affordable, and to ensure the reliable energy source Lansing homeowners and businesses expect and demand."
While Michigan is heavy on its use of coal-fired generation, there are signs of change. In 2016, Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder (R) signed legislation to overhaul the state's energy sector and preserve retail net metering. That move also included more efficiency and demand response, and increasing the state's renewable energy goal to 15% by 2021.