Consumers Energy has announced plans to stop using coal as a fuel source for electricity by 2025 – 15 years ahead of schedule.
Its updated Clean Energy Plan, if approved by the Michigan Public Service Commission, would speed the closure of three coal-fired units at the Campbell generating complex near Holland.
Campbell 1 and 2, collectively capable of producing more than 600MW of electricity, would retire in 2025 – roughly six years sooner than what was scheduled – and Campbell 3, with an 840MW capacity, would also retire in 2025 – around 15 years sooner than its scheduled design life.
Under the Plan, Consumers Energy also intends to use 90% clean energy resources and develop nearly 8,000MW of solar energy to power homes and businesses in Michigan by 2040, helping customers save around $650 million (£465.7m) during that period.
In addition, the updated proposal calls for moving up the closure of Karn 3 and 4 – units that run on natural gas and fuel oil and can generate more than 1,100 to meet peak demand – to 2023, around eight years sooner than their design lives.
The moves are expected to help Consumers Energy reduce carbon emissions by more than 63 million tons – equivalent to taking 12.4 million passenger vehicles off the road for one year.
Brandon Hofmeister, Senior Vice President for governmental, regulatory and public affairs said: “Consumers Energy is committed to a just transition away from coal as a fuel source for electricity.
“We supported employees and communities impacted by our 2016 coal retirements by finding new roles for workers who wanted to stay, fulfilling our environmental responsibilities at the sites and helping local leaders pursue new economic possibilities. We plan to follow the same philosophy to help those affected by the proposed Campbell and Karn retirements.”