The Jackson, MI based utility company Consumers Energy is being recognized again as a top energy provider in the Midwest United States. The company has been named top “environmental champion” among combination energy providers (providers of both electricity and natural gas) in the Midwest by Cogent Reports, a division of Market Strategies International that measures customer engagement with utilities.
In a survey done by Cogent Reports, Consumers Energy also ranked second for the most trusted combination utility in the Midwest region, and third nationwide.
This web-based survey conducted by Cogent Reports collected answers from among 19,000 residential electric and natural gas customers of the 125 largest utility companies in the United States. The survey focused on 28 separate measures in the following six areas: concern for customers, company reputation, credibility, dedication, environmental performance, and community involvement.
Consumers Energy officials say the company saved Michigan residents a whopping $575 million through its energy-efficiency program in 2013. Consumers Energy already has some environmental performance achievements it can celebrate and plenty of goals with the hope of continuing to better their environmental impact. It expects to spend $1.3 billion over a decade to improve air quality at its power plants, and will reduce water usage at power plants by 20 percent as of 2020. By April 2016 Consumers Energy plans to retire seven coal-fired power plants. The utility has also expanded its solar energy program for homes and businesses, and developed a program with Michigan State University and Michigan’s agricultural community to buy electricity from anaerobic digesters.
Currently, construction is underway for the 105-megawatt wind park Cross Winds, a $255 million investment for the utility. The wind park is expected to be up and running by late 2014 and will help Consumers Energy meet a state mandate that requires that 10 percent of its energy comes from renewable sources.