Michigan’s largest utility has entered into a long-term power purchase agreement with a new wind farm.
Construction is set to begin on Geronimo Energy’s Apple Blossom Wind Farm in 2016, and upon completion the wind power is being purchased by Consumers Energy, the principal subsidiary of CMS Energy.
Under the agreement, Consumers Energy will have the option of purchasing the wind farm in the future. The company already owns and operates two wind farms in Michigan and purchases power from another seven.
“We are committed to providing electricity that is affordable, reliable and sustainable, especially as seven of our coal plants are retired by April 15 next year,” said Tim Sparks, Consumers Energy’s vice president for energy supply operations. “This new agreement demonstrates that we will enter into contracts with qualified independent third parties when projects like this one contribute to keeping our business rates competitive and our residential bills affordable.”
The new 100-MW wind farm in Huron County will help Consumers Energy reach the state’s mandated renewable energy portfolio a year early, obtaining 10 percent of the company’s electricity from renewable sources.
Consumers Energy, which provides natural gas and electric to 6.6 million Michigan residents, is also in the process of developing the company’s first community solar program, Solar Gardens. That program could generate power as early as 2016.