Self-Direct Program Details for Business Customers.

Energy conservation legislation enacted by the Michigan legislature allows DTE Electric customers to self-direct and implement their own energy optimization plan.

Leading Corporate Citizenship

DTE Energy is committed to building strong relationships with people in the communities where we live and serve. This connection extends beyond just our business operations; at DTE we believe it is our responsibility to help protect and shape a prosperous future for our communities. Our employees live this belief by dedicating their time and energy to organizations throughout Michigan.

Our services provide critical support for health, quality of life, comfort and convenience. We engage our communities through our economic development efforts, charitable giving and volunteering. As one of the largest investors in Michigan, we embrace our role as a leading corporate citizen with a responsibility to help communities thrive. The DTE Energy Foundation, the philanthropic arm of DTE Energy, is integral to fulfilling this mission.

Driving Economic Progress

Through our employment, operations and investments, DTE Energy makes a significant impact on Michigan’s economy. We pay wages and benefits for approximately 10,000 employees (most of whom are located in Michigan). As we continue to grow our non-utility gas and electric businesses, our economic impact outside the state also is expanding.

Pure Michigan Business Connect

DTE Energy is one of seven original leaders in Pure Michigan Business Connect, an $8 billion public-private initiative established in 2011 to increase business with Michigan suppliers throughout the state. In May 2013, we pledged to shift an incremental $1 billion in spending from businesses located outside of Michigan, and in some cases the United States, to Michigan-based suppliers by 2015. We met this goal – and surpassed it – a full year ahead of schedule.

Building on the success of this initiative, in June 2015 we announced our commitment to invest another $5 billion with Michigan-based companies over the next five years, a significant expansion of the initial pledge. DTE Energy worked hard in 2015 to bring even more business back to the Michigan communities it serves every day. The company invested in and supported a number of Michigan-based businesses, spending $945 million throughout the year. To date, DTE, in partnership with Pure Michigan Business Connect, has brought $1.7 billion to local Michigan communities, creating 8,500 new jobs.

Highlights of DTE’s partnership with Michigan-based vendors in 2015 include:

  • > Southeast Michigan: DTE exceeded $697 million in investments with nearly 800 companies in the Detroit metro area alone, creating and supporting more than 3,400 jobs.
  • > West and Northern Michigan: DTE invested nearly $60 million by doing business with 97 companies in the western region of the state, creating and supporting nearly 300 jobs.
  • > Greater Lansing Area: DTE’s investment exceeded $4.6 million by doing business with 39 companies in the Lansing area, creating and supporting more than 23 jobs.


Economic Partnerships

Economic Partnerships

DTE Energy partners with more than 35 economic development agencies, including the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, Ann Arbor SPARK, The Right Place Program, Lake Shore Advantage and Detroit Economic Growth Corporation. Our partner organizations stretch from the Upper Peninsula, to Grand Rapids, to the City of Detroit. Through these partnerships, we provide financial support and leadership on committees and boards of organizations. The most critical component of our economic development partnerships is supporting projects that bring new business to the communities we serve. This work includes helping to answer utility-related questions and solving problems for potential customers.

Our goal is to attract and expand business activity, bringing new investment and base jobs to Michigan. Base jobs are critical to our region’s success. They are created by firms that export their products outside of the community where they operate. Examples include automotive manufacturers and suppliers. These jobs in turn create non-base jobs that serve the local market, like restaurants and retailers.

The economic development projects that DTE Energy supported during the past six years, 2010 through 2015, created and retained thousands of jobs throughout Michigan. In the northwestern area of the state, DTE worked with dozens of local suppliers, and in 2015, we contracted Thunder Bay Tree Service, a local landscaping business in Alpena, for herbicide spraying on our transmission pipeline. Maintaining the right-of-way, through herbicide spraying, brush removal and tree trimming, allows DTE to detect potential issues with our pipeline.

Another great example of our commitment to growing Michigan businesses is our partnership with Barton Malow Co. Barton Malow played an important role in DTE Energy’s clean air efforts over the last several years. In 2014, DTE worked with Barton Malow to construct wind parks in Michigan’s Thumb region. Two hundred Michiganders were employed in the construction of the Echo Wind Parks. In 2015, Barton Malow continued as a key team member in emissions control installation projects. DTE has helped this local company build on its experience as a civil contractor to become recognized as a full engineering, procurement and construction contractor, also helping them find new and innovative ways to enhance productivity.

"We are proud and grateful to call DTE Energy a long time client. Our business and partnership built with DTE Energy has been mutually beneficial in improving and building DTE Energy’s renewable energy portfolio, improved air quality controls and new energy generation opportunities. As a partner of DTE Energy, we have improved our commitments through safety, quality and value to DTE Energy and their customers. We are a better company because of DTE Energy."

-Ryan Maibach
President and CEO, Barton Malow Company


Policy Leadership

Our goal is to promote long-term energy policy that is based on the pillars of reliability, adaptability and affordability. The success of our company depends upon a stable, balanced regulatory and political model. As a company, we work collaboratively to promote policy solutions that benefit the well-being of our state and our state’s residents, businesses and institutions. DTE is embarking on a major investment to transform its generation portfolio. This presents the opportunity for increased spending with local businesses and aggressive economic development in Michigan. However, the challenge is to ensure this transition provides affordable, reliable energy for Michigan's families and businesses.

Michigan Energy Policy

DTE Energy advocates for fair and responsible public policies to support reliable, affordable and clean electricity. We actively participate in the public policy making process led by our state’s executive and legislative branches to develop Michigan’s next energy policy. DTE has an important role to play in helping our state successfully craft sound policies that support its energy landscape.

Energy policy affects more than just DTE as a company. We feel it is DTE's responsibility to use our position as a force for growth in Michigan to give a voice to the residents and small businesses that benefit from balanced and equitable energy policy.

Michigan, and the entire United States, has entered a period of profound transformation of the power generation sector. Many factors will affect Michigan's energy portfolio moving forward:

> The aging of our coal fleet

> The emergence of cost-competitive natural gas-fired and wind-powered energy generation

> State-level clean energy policies

> U.S. Environmental Protection Agency regulations

Retiring older and less efficient coal plants has already begun. Determining the type of new generation that will replace that coal-fired capacity must take many factors into account, including the projected costs of different technologies and fuel sources, their operating characteristics and their environmental impact. Therefore, Michigan needs a flexible process to enable utilities to integrate the most cost-effective technologies at the right time to ensure affordable rates for customers. Today, and for the foreseeable future, natural gas and wind are the most economical sources of new generation for Michigan.

Under Michigan’s current regulatory structure, 10 percent of Michigan’s electric load is served by retail energy marketers rather than regulated utilities. Currently, no one is planning for the customers of retail energy marketers, which puts reliability and affordability at risk for all customers. To support a thriving economy, we need an equitable energy policy by which all customers pay fair cost-of-service rates, so Michigan’s electric utility customers are not subsidizing reliability for retail energy marketers’ customers when new plants are built.

The Midcontinent Independent System Operator (MISO), the independent organization responsible for reliable electric service throughout the Great Lakes region, predicts that Michigan's lower peninsula will have a power shortfall beginning in 2016. With a capacity shortfall on the horizon, Michigan needs to act soon to secure its energy future.

Involvement in Energy Policy Organizations

We participate in a number of business and customer advocacy organizations in Michigan:

> Alliance for Michigan Power

> Business Leaders for Michigan

> Coalition to Keep Michigan Warm

> Detroit Regional Chamber

> Michigan Chamber of Commerce

> Michigan Manufacturers Association

We also are members of local and national industry associations where the company holds positions on their boards and participates on projects or committees. We actively engage in discussions with trade associations to help align our positions, and participate in their advocacy to policymakers to the extent possible. For example, DTE Energy led the effort with the Edison Electric Institute in its review of the Clean Power Plan (CPP), the federal regulatory program to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Our industry group worked with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to craft final rules, issued in 2015, that mitigated potentially costly emission reduction requirements in the early phases of the CPP compliance period. The requirements could have created unreasonable costs for our customers and negatively impacted electric system reliability.

In addition to Edison Electric Institute, other trade organizations that we participate in at the federal level include:

> American Gas Association

> American Iron and Steel Institute

> Biomass Power Association

> Interstate Natural Gas Association of America

> National Association of Manufacturers

> Nuclear Energy Institute

> Public Affairs Council

> U.S. Chamber of Commerce

We participate in local and regional trade associations in states where we have operations, including the California Biomass Energy Alliance and the Marcellus Shale Coalition. DTE Energy is also a member of the Human Resources Policy Association and the Center on Executive Compensation.

Political Contributions

We believe that participation in the political and public policy arenas, when conducted in a legal manner, is an important and appropriate role for companies in open societies. In the United States, there are important federal and state laws that govern this participation.

The DTE Energy Political Action Committee (PAC) was formed in 1977 as a voluntary, non-partisan committee to promote and support responsible government through contributions to candidates for election to federal, state and local offices. It is designed to provide DTE Energy employees with an effective, convenient way to make financial contributions to candidates and to participate in the democratic process. The PAC is guided by a steering committee made up of employees from around the company.

Information about DTE Energy PAC contributions can be obtained via the Federal Election Commission website and the Michigan Secretary of State’s Bureau of Elections website.


The DTE Energy Foundation supports jobs and education, environmental stewardship, economic progress and neighborhood revitalization to be a force for growth and prosperity, ensuring communities are vibrant places to live, work and play. In 2015, the Foundation awarded $15 million in grants, impacting 450 communities across Michigan. Over its 32-year history, the Foundation has continued to deepen its support for the state and its residents; charitable giving in 2015 was its highest level ever, a 25 percent increase from 2014.

Employment and Education

> In 2015, we contributed $75,000 to FIRST in Michigan to support statewide Robotics competitions that engage students with learning opportunities in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM).

Economic Progress

> In 2015, we contributed $50,000 to support ArtPrize, a three-week art competition in Grand Rapids that celebrates artists from around the world and promotes tourism for the city and region.

Environmental Stewardship

> In 2015, we contributed $250,000 for tree plantings in partnership with ReLeaf Michigan, and a matching grant program in partnership with the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, to plant thousands of trees.

Neighborhood Safety and Revitalization

> In 2015, we contributed $75,000 to the Detroit Public Safety Foundation for a new horse trailer for its mounted police to have a continued presence throughout the city.

"Our giving footprint touches every community where we live and serve. Our support allows people and communities to flourish – making the homes we live in and the streets our children play on safer, providing educational opportunities and creating jobs – all of which are integral to the economic vitality of Michigan."

– Faye Nelson
President of the DTE Energy Foundation


In addition to the Foundation grants, DTE Energy made corporate donations totaling $3 million in 2015, including $1 million for The Heat and Warmth Fund (THAW).

Flint Disaster Relief Fund

Not far from the heart of our service territory, the community of Flint, Michigan, is facing a massive water emergency. Thanks to generous support pouring in from around the country, residents affected by high levels of lead in their water are now getting enough safe drinking water for their immediate needs. Yet the impacts of high lead exposure will continue long after the initial water drives and fundraisers have ceased. In response to this crisis, the DTE Energy Foundation activated its Emergency Disaster Relief Fund and donated $25,000, raising an additional $10,500 in employee contributions for a total of $35,500. Donations will go to the Community Foundation of Greater Flint’s Child Health and Development Fund to provide long-term care and interventions for children and families who have been harmed by lead-tainted water.

United Way

In 2015, DTE Energy employees, retirees and the Foundation collectively pledged nearly $2.4 million to improve lives and support communities through the United Way. Through charitable giving, our company supports 40 United Ways across Michigan, and 52 chapters in 12 states.



Volunteerism is integrated into the workplace culture of DTE Energy, representing a direct employee connection to our corporate citizenship efforts. Volunteering provides opportunities for employees to develop leadership skills, connect with colleagues who have similar interests across the enterprise, build relationships and use their unique skills to help others. We are harnessing the energy and expertise of our 10,000 employees for volunteer efforts that have a real impact across Michigan.

To enhance the visibility and coordination of our volunteer culture, we launched the DTE Care Force this past year. With this refreshed initiative, we are increasing opportunities for “skill-based” volunteer projects to bring our employees’ knowledge and skills to communities in a sustainable and meaningful way. During 2015, 2,335 employees participated in over 100 company-sponsored volunteer events including DTE's flagship programs such as Holiday Meals on Wheels, Arbor Day and DTE Cares Days. We estimate that DTE employees collectively donated approximately 12,000 volunteer hours in 2015.


Jobs and Education

DTE Energy supports a wide range of education and employment initiatives, with a particular focus on revitalizing the skilled trades and technical education pipeline in Michigan. We are implementing programs that support summer work and high school partnerships, which connect youth to professional and skilled trade careers. Over time, these initiatives will be integrated into a broader professional development and mentorship program that connects students to specific training, apprenticeships and employment opportunities.

Currently, DTE Energy is working with public schools, community colleges and the State of Michigan to prepare students, veterans and experienced workers for careers in the energy sector. These initiatives are critical for our long-term business success and also provide tremendous economic and social benefits for our communities.

  • > In 2015, DTE Energy Foundation spent more than $2.3 million on early childhood, K-12 and post-secondary education programs in Michigan. The Foundation also provided funding to support more than 500 students working summer jobs in local nonprofit organizations via the Grow Detroit’s Young Talent program led by the Mayor’s office.
  • > DTE Energy partners with universities and community colleges throughout Michigan to develop programming intended to boost college graduation success, specialized energy courses and apprenticeship training programs. We also work with community colleges and universities to support programs and scholarships in fields related to science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).
  • > We also partner with the National Energy Foundation to provide educational materials on energy efficiency, safety and careers in energy for K-12 teachers and students. In 2015, 205 schools were visited with more than 19,500 Take Action energy kits distributed to students and families.

Creating a Career Pathway for the Energy Sector

DTE Energy, Consumer’s Energy, and the State of Michigan, all members of the Michigan Energy Workforce Development Consortium (MEWDC), collaborated to create a career pathway for career and technical education students to pursue jobs in the often “invisible” energy sector. This pathway was adopted as Michigan’s 17th “career cluster,” providing students with the ability to study traditional academics while leveraging skills specific to an industry/career path. This new distinction will educate career and technical students, parents, counselors and educators about financially rewarding, reliable skilled trade jobs available within the energy sector, as well as build a talent pipeline to succeed the roughly 50 percent of current Michigan energy workers slated to retire by 2020. Michigan is the sixth state in the nation to adopt energy as a career pathway, joining Florida, Georgia, California, Indiana and Virginia. The MEWDC was able to accelerate the work necessary to accomplish these results through a grant awarded in 2015 by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation and USA Funds focusing on Talent Pipeline Management. This model calls for industry to lead the way through collaboration.

Summer Jobs Program

The DTE Energy Foundation supports the Summer Youth Nonprofit Work Experience, offering valuable opportunities for young people to learn about work responsibilities. The Foundation sponsors this collaborative program, which is run by the nonprofit partners Michigan Works! Muskegon-Oceana and Michigan Works! West Central and funded through the United Way of the Lakeshore. In 2015, with DTE Energy Foundation support of $100,000, the program created more than 70 employment opportunities for underserved youth in Big Rapids and Baldwin; the program is expected to grow with additional Foundation dollars and increased opportunities for 30 more students in Muskegon and Muskegon Heights schools. The 2016 program will increase access for more students.

In Detroit, the DTE Energy Foundation pledged $600,000 to Detroit Employment Solutions Corporation to foster workforce development opportunities for Metro Detroit youth. This large-scale public-private partnership, Grow Detroit’s Young Talent, placed 5,600 youth in over 190 organizations for six weeks between June and August 2015. The City of Detroit has set an ambitious goal of increasing the program’s employment to 8,000 youth for Summer 2016.

FIRST Tech Challenge

Students throughout Michigan are seeing firsthand how dedicated DTE employees are to the youth in our communities and the future of the energy industry. Many employees share their passion, expertise and time by volunteering with the Michigan chapter of FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology). FIRST in Michigan is a group of programs which includes FIRST Robotics, FIRST Tech Challenge and FIRST Lego League. These programs help prepare young people for STEM careers.

DTE Energy has been involved with FIRST for more than 10 years and provides support for more than 50 Michigan teams in the FIRST Tech Challenge and nine Michigan teams for the FIRST Robotics Challenge. As part of our continuing efforts to be a force for growth and prosperity in the communities where we live and serve, we are increasing our presence with existing teams and supporting the development of new teams focused on girls and at-risk youth. Volunteers guide and mentor the students through the process, and provide support at competition events.



In recent years, DTE has been actively revitalizing the neighborhood surrounding our downtown Detroit headquarters. The landscape is changing and the streets are more alive as pedestrians and bikers travel to downtown businesses, new restaurants, renovated buildings and residences.

By implementing 24-hour vehicle patrols, car and bike patrols, installing cameras and restoring street lights in the area, we have helped to reduce overall street crime in our downtown neighborhood by 66 percent. This includes a reduction in property damage, stolen property from vehicles, stolen vehicles, and assaults. Since 2013, we have removed more than 16 tons of litter from the streets, seen an 80 percent reduction in property damage and have partnered with more than 30 neighborhood organizations.

The DTE Energy Foundation contributed $75,000 in 2015 to the Detroit Public Safety Foundation for the police department's Mounted Police Division, which provides visible, approachable and effective crime prevention services throughout Detroit. We are also partnering with the city to clear properties of natural gas and electric service so that decrepit buildings can be safely demolished, allowing for new neighborhood investment and redevelopment.

"Neighborhoods are the lifeblood of our communities. We are working to stabilize, transform and improve the neighborhoods to create safer, more connected and thriving cities. By partnering and sharing our lessons-learned and capabilities with neighbors and other organizations, we can have a stronger impact on shaping safety downtown."

– Dave Meador
DTE Energy Vice Chairman and Chief Administrative Office


M-1 Rail Project

DTE is the lead corporate partner in a major public-private collaboration, the M-1 Rail Project, implementing a 3.3-mile streetcar line between downtown Detroit and the city’s North End district. The project will be an economic driver and community asset that will spur continued renewal in Detroit and positively impact the entire region. DTE Energy is providing key infrastructure and design services to support the electric streetcar system, integrating the work cost-effectively with system upgrades in downtown Detroit that were already being planned. The M-1 rail line is expected to begin commercial operation in early 2017.

Reliable Electricity for Detroit Public Schools

To provide reliable electricity to schools in Detroit, DTE Energy helped to convert 41 schools formerly served by the Detroit Public Lighting Department to its energy grid. In addition to these conversions, we also performed electric maintenance in numerous other schools in the City of Detroit. This initiative improved power reliability across Detroit Public Schools by 90 percent, effectively creating more than 200 additional school-days for students as compared with the year before the switch to our grid. This transition is helping to improve the learning environment for Detroit Public Schools and its students, ultimately fostering the growth of Detroit’s next generation.

Detroit Solar Park

In 2016, we will partner with the City of Detroit to break ground on one of the largest urban solar power arrays in the country. The Detroit solar park will be housed at the former O’Shea Park and is expected to generate more than $1 million in tax revenue for the city over the life of the 20-year lease, while producing enough clean energy to power approximately 450 homes. This project will provide educational opportunities for students to learn more about sustainability and renewable energy through interpretive signage, rain gardens and additional educational partnerships.

"This partnership with DTE Energy is a perfect example of how public-private partnerships can stabilize and strengthen our neighborhoods. This vacant property soon will be put back to use in a way that is good for the neighborhood and good for the environment."

– Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan