DTE moves up closure of last coal-powered plant

DTE is moving up the retirement of its last coal power plant in Monroe as part of a larger clean energy plan to transition the state's largest utility toward more clean energy sources.

The company said it would shut down its Monroe Power Plant in 2032 instead of 2035. It also plans to repurpose the Belle River coal plant in St. Clair Shores into running on natural gas. DTE's announcement is part of a revised 20-year-plan to overhaul how the company generates power with solar and wind energy and bolstering how it stores energy.

The plan, the culmination of two years of negotiations between stakeholders, staff with the public service commission, the attorney general's office, and other industry and environmental advocates, will be sent to state regulators for approval.

"Our CleanVision Integrated Resource Plan will end our use of coal in 2032 while developing enough Michigan-made renewables to power approximately 4 million homes," said DTE Chairman Jerry Norcia.

A news release Wednesday said the company wanted to reduce emissions up to 85% by 2032 and 90% by 2040. 

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To do that, DTE said it will develop 15,000 megawatts of Michigan-made renewable energy by 2042 - enough to power approximately 4 million homes. It also wants energy storage of 780 megawatts by 2030.

As it closes its older power plants, DTE said it would re-train employees impacted by the shuttering.