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Communities

Community Energy Management

EGLE assists, educates, and encourages Michigan communities to advance conservation and efficient use of energy resources to improve environmental and public health as well as achieve greater energy security for future generations. 

Communities have many factors to consider when working toward energy decarbonization, which can be broadly approached using community energy management: a sequential process that involves measuring a community's energy consumption, reducing any energy waste, and supplying all energy needs from renewable sources. 

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Benchmark and Track Energy Usage

Identify facility energy use and track it over time, both noting achievements and areas for improvement. Benchmarking allows municipalities to track their buildings energy use and compare them to similar buildings in the community and nationwide. 

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Conduct an Energy Audit

An energy audit should be conducted to better understand how to improve a building's energy use. Energy audits are used to identify and recommend energy conservation measures to reduce the amount of energy input without negatively affecting performance.

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Improve Energy Efficiency

Reduce energy use intensity for public buildings. Energy efficiency improvements reduce energy costs and greenhouse gas emissions, while creating a more sustainable building stock in a community. An energy audit should be used to guide energy efficiency upgrades.

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Transition to Renewable Energy

Increase the use of renewable energy in municipal buildings and make renewable energy accessible to the community through strategic planning and regulations. Renewable energy solutions may include solar photovoltaics, wind, biomass, hydroelectric, and geothermal.

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Community Impacts of Renewable Energy 

Once you reach the fourth step in the community energy management process, it is important to understand the opportunities and challenges that a renewable energy project may bring to your community to determine the best course of action. 

 

Community Solar

Community solar is a solar energy system that generates renewable energy and is shared by multiple subscribers in a community.  Learn more to find out about solar power in your community.

Clean Energy in Michigan Series

The Clean Energy in Michigan Series provides case studies and fact sheets answering common questions about clean energy projects in Michigan.

Frequently Asked Questions

Visit Frequently Asked Questions, updated regularly, to learn what others have been asking about the community impacts of renewable energy.

Renewable Energy Planning and Zoning Guidance 

Planning and zoning are tools that local governments can use to attract renewable energy projects that are in line with the community's vision for itself. Proactive action can increase success and decrease contention. 
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Zoning for Renewable Energy Database

In a unique project, EGLE and University of Michigan's Graham Sustainability Institute have developed the Michigan Zoning Database, a searchable source of information of municipal ordinances.

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Solar Resources

Guidance on incorporating renewable energy in to community plans and ordinances for solar energy.

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Wind Resources

Guidance on incorporating renewable energy in to community plans and ordinances for wind energy.