MPSC initiates proceeding on improving long-term resource adequacy for Consumers Energy Company and DTE Electric Company customers

January 20, 2017

Contact: Judy Palnau, 517-284-8300
Agency: Michigan Public Service Commission

LANSING, Mich. – The Michigan Public Service Commission (MPSC) today started proceedings on improving the long-term resource adequacy for customers of Consumers Energy Company (Case No. U-18239) and DTE Electric Company (Case No. U-18248).

“The Michigan Public Service Commission is initiating a program needed to ensure that Michigan’s electric resources are adequate to meet its future needs,” said MPSC Chairman Sally Talberg. “This process will put Michigan on a path to ensure electric customers have reliable power at fair prices over the long term, regardless of whether they are served by the local utility or an alternative electric provider.” 

The MPSC has a responsibility to ensure that electric providers have adequate electric generation capacity to cover their anticipated customer needs. The unprecedented number of power plant closures in the state and region have brought electric reliability issues to the forefront. 

Recent policy activities at both the federal and state level, including passage of Public Act 341 of 2016 by the Michigan Legislature, aim toward providing Michigan with the tools it needs to make sure there is adequate electric generation capacity to serve customers.   

The MPSC is initiating these proceedings to allow for the decisions it needs to make regarding resource adequacy to be conducted in an orderly and timely fashion, with participation from affected electric utilities, alternative electric suppliers, customers, and other interested parties.  The proceedings will evaluate different options for meeting reliability requirements in a cost-effective manner.   

Additional MPSC actions today include:

Case No. U-15895 and U-18238: The MPSC directed the MPSC staff to file by March 31 proposed revisions to the MPSC’s standard rate application filing forms and instructions in the docket for Case No. U-18238. Interested persons may submit written comments regarding the proposed revisions to the MPSC’s standard rate application filing forms and instructions by 5 p.m. on April 28. Comments should reference Case No. U-18238 and may be emailed to mpscedockets@michigan.gov.

Case No. U-18124: The MPSC found good cause to prevent Consumers Energy Company from self-implementing a $60 million natural gas rate increase on Jan. 29. The MPSC instead said it would limit any increase to $20 million, if the utility chooses to self-implement new rates. The MPSC found that a rate increase of $20 million represents a reasonable amount to self-implement.

On Aug. 1 last year, Consumers Energy Company filed an application seeking authority to increase its retail rates for the distribution of natural gas by $90.5 million. The MPSC has one year to issue its final order in this case.

Case Nos. U-18239; U-18248; U-15895 and U-18238; and U-18124

For more information about the MPSC, please visit www.michigan.gov/mpsc or sign up for one of its listservs to keep up to date on MPSC matters.