Ford Makes ‘Largest Renewable Energy Purchase’ With DTE Energy
DETROIT — The Ford Motor Company has signed an agreement to purchase 650 MW of solar power from Michigan utility DTE Energy in a bid to make the car maker’s Michigan operations carbon free by 2025 — a full decade before the goal set for the company’s global operations.
The purchase, which DTE Energy says is the “largest renewable energy purchase from a U.S. utility ever,” is being made through the utility’s MIGreenPower Renewable Energy program.
Once installed, the energy project will increase Michigan’s solar power capacity by almost 70%.
“We want to congratulate and thank Ford Motor Company for its environmental leadership and commitment to clean energy,” said Jerry Norcia, chairman and CEO, DTE Energy, in a written statement.
“Ford was the first large industrial customer to enroll in our MIGreenPower program in 2019 and we want to thank the automaker for its continued commitment to using MIGreenPower to help decarbonize its operations and meet its sustainability goals,” he said.
Under the terms of the agreement, Ford will purchase enough carbon-free electricity in Michigan annually to account for all the electricity Ford currently uses to manufacture its vehicles in Michigan.
“A goal isn’t really anything unless there’s a plan,” said Jim Farley, Ford president and CEO, as the announcement was made last week. “Today is an example of what it looks like to get off our butts, do something about it and take action.”
DTE’s MIGreenPower is among the largest voluntary renewable energy programs in the country.
On an annual basis, MIGreenPower customers have enrolled 2.8 million megawatt hours of clean energy in the program, which has the environmental benefit equivalent to avoiding 2.2 million tons of carbon dioxide emissions annually.
DTE is Michigan’s largest producer of renewable energy and the company plans to add thousands of megawatts of new clean energy projects to support the program.
“I want to congratulate DTE Energy and Ford Motor Company for taking this significant step to increase our state’s solar energy production and to position Michigan as a leader in climate action,” said Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer.
“Efforts like this are the reason Michigan had the best job growth for energy-sector jobs in the country last year, which will help to advance our state’s decarbonization goals, create good-paying jobs and strengthen our economy,” she continued. “As outlined in our state’s MI Healthy Climate Plan, we must take immediate, tangible steps to mitigate climate change and to reduce greenhouse gas emissions so we can achieve economy-wide carbon neutrality by 2050. Steps like this collaboration between Ford and DTE are helping to move our entire state forward, building on our automotive legacy while protecting clean air and water for future generations.”