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Published in Energy
Consumers Energy launches electric vehicle program for businesses COURTESY PHOTO

Consumers Energy launches electric vehicle program for businesses

BY Monday, June 07, 2021 12:49pm

JACKSON — Investor-owned utility Consumers Energy has launched a new electric vehicle program that provides rebates and consultation to businesses looking to transition to electrified fleets.

State utility regulators approved the Jackson-based utility’s $12.2 million PowerMIFleet program late last year as part of a broader rate case. The program is modeled off of Consumers’ PowerMIDrive pilot program that offers rebates for various types of electric vehicle charging stations for residential and commercial customers. Consumers’ first EV pilot program has issued rebates for more than 800 charging stations, according to the company.

The new fleet program is designed specifically for businesses that are looking to transition their fleet vehicles to electric models. The fleet program includes $3 million in rebates for charging stations as well as consultation to businesses, schools and local governments about charging vehicles at certain times of the day to reduce electricity costs.

“Michigan was the birthplace of the American auto industry. Now, we are the center of the industry’s clean energy revolution,” Lauren Youngdahl Snyder, Consumers Energy’s vice president for customer experience, said in a statement. “With PowerMIFleet, we at Consumers Energy are taking our success with EVs to the next level making it easier for other businesses to join us on this Clean Energy journey.”

PowerMIFleet offers up to $5,000 in rebates for Level 2 chargers, $35,000 for non-public fast chargers and $70,000 for public fast-charging stations. Consumers would also pay for electric grid upgrades to make sites ready for the chargers. Program participants would also receive customized site assessments about how the program is performing. The program supports on- and off-road vehicles, including light, medium and heavy duty vehicles.

Clean energy advocates previously supported Consumers’ electric fleet vehicle pilot program, saying it “fills a key need” in transitioning municipal and private fleets to electric vehicles. Experts have also said electrified fleets can help jumpstart demand in the passenger vehicle market.

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