LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) – “This year, Consumers Energy has made a major commitment to clean energy,” said Consumers Energy Spokesman Brian Wheeler.
The goal of the company’s new clean energy plan is to expand solar power throughout the state, Wheeler said.
This 20-year plan was put together to meet Michigan’s changing energy needs.
“By 2040, more than half of the energy we supply to homes and businesses in the next generation will come from solar,” Wheeler said.
And for that to happen, Wheeler said Consumers will need some land.
“Whether it’s in the Lansing area or really in the lower peninsula. We are looking for large tracts of land where we can develop solar energy that can provide this clean energy,” Wheeler said.
The consumer action comes at a time when many people in mid-Michigan are somewhat skeptical about whether installing solar panels would be beneficial to their land, with some calling it an eyesore and others saying the panels would take up too much space. .
“Many communities and many solar developers will plan projects with landscape buffers and vegetative screening so that residential areas or roadways do not directly see that solar installation,” said Brad Neumann, MSU senior extension lecturer.
The sun is not only good for the climate, but also for your finances.
“Some of the other impacts of solar, or the benefits of solar, could be tax breaks that could be available to the local community that hosts these projects,” Neumann said.
Problems arise when officials fail to plan these projects ahead of time, leaving communities at a disadvantage, he said.