Michigan public utility Consumers Energy, which serves 6.7 million of Michigan’s 10 million residents, today announced that it will install 200 new electric vehicle chargers across the state by the end of 2023. And that includes 100 fast chargers.
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New EV chargers in Michigan
Consumers Energy has already installed more than 1,500 EV chargers for homes, businesses, and along roads across the Lower Peninsula, including 35 fast chargers.
The US Department of Energy reports that there were 10,620 registered EVs in Michigan as of December 31, 2020. And according to data from the Michigan secretary of state, at the end of 2021, the number of EVs in Michigan was up 58% statewide year-over-year, and up 71% in communities that the utility serves.
How Consumers Energy powers its EV chargers
Consumers Energy says it will ditch coal by 2025. Its plan states that it would achieve 60% emissions reductions by 2025 and “keep [it] on course to achieve net zero emissions by 2040.”
But natural gas, a fossil fuel that isn’t clean, plays a prominent role in its clean energy transformation, and that matters, because what powers EV chargers impacts how clean electric cars ultimately are.
According to its 2021 Clean Energy Plan, Consumers Energy wants its electric capacity by fuel source to be 40% natural gas, 35% renewables, 15% customer efficiency programs, and 10% energy storage.
By 2040, the utility is aiming for 63% renewables, 15% customer efficiency programs, 12% energy storage, and 10% natural gas.
According to the US Energy Information Administration, Michigan has more natural gas storage fields than any other state. In 2020, natural gas accounted for 33% of the state’s net generation, while coal’s share declined to 27%. Renewables provided about 11% of Michigan’s electricity net generation in 2020, and wind made up three-fifths of that.
Photo: Consumers Energy
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