Published Date : Oct 17, 2013
This winter, customers of Consumers Energy – the largest gas utility in Michigan – could collectively save up to $260 million with the subsidiary of CMS Energy Corp. claiming to have slashed its fuel costs by 44% in the last five years.
As compared to heating costs incurred by a customer five years ago, the costs this year are expected to be $50 lower on an average, per residential customer. This means that an individual residential customer could save up to $200 over the entire winter season.
Consumers Energy supplies over 1.7 million customers with natural gas. Its customers are spread across 45 counties in Michigan’s Lower Peninsula. This initiative by Consumers Energy – under the Promise to Michigan program – not only aims to help its customers save money, but also make their homes more energy efficient. The program was conceptualized with the aim of providing reliable and affordable gas supply services to Consumers Energy customers.
Consumers Energy has taken such initiatives in the past too, with the company declaring that it had cut natural gas fuel costs by 15% in March 2013. If successfully continued, these programs could help customers in Michigan to collectively save up to $200 million by 2014.
These savings have been primarily made possible by the large storage facilities and investment capabilities that Consumers Energy possesses. This helps the company save massive amounts of lower-priced natural gas. At the same time, the company is working towards investing in and upgrading its natural gas pipelines for a better, more efficient distribution system. Replacing certain pipelines is also on the company’s agenda on this front. To this end, the company has plans to spend approximately $7 billion over the next five years. Moreover, plans are afoot to build a gas-fired power plant in Genesee County that would boast a capacity of 700 MW.