Detroit’s DTE Energy Announces Net Zero Goal for Natural Gas

Detroit-based DTE Energy today announced it is expanding the utility’s net zero goal to include DTE Gas. It plans to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2050 from procurement through delivery.
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natural gas power plant in East China Township
DTE Energy has expanded its net zero goal to include DTE Gas; plans to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2050 are underway. Pictured is the Blue Water Energy Center, a natural gas-fueled plant planned for East China Township that is slated to begin operating in 2022. // File rendering

Detroit-based DTE Energy today announced it is expanding the utility’s net zero goal to include DTE Gas. It plans to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2050 from procurement through delivery.

The company announced in September a goal to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2050 in its electric company.

In addition, DTE Gas plans to amplify its net zero commitment by partnering with customers to address up to 100 percent of their own natural gas carbon footprint with programs that encourage energy efficiency and participation in the company’s voluntary emissions offset program.

The plan expands DTE Gas’s 2018 commitment to reduce methane emissions by 80 percent. The new commitment is expected to reduce annual greenhouse gas emissions by more than 6 million metric tons by 2050. This reduction is the equivalent of offsetting the natural gas emissions of 1 million homes or taking 1.3 million cars off the road each year.

“Climate change is one of the defining public policy issues of our time, and it demands a bold response,” says Jerry Norcia, president and CEO of DTE Energy. “The level of impact urgently needed can only be achieved by viewing the challenge through a holistic lens, bringing our suppliers and our customers on the journey with us. This is the right plan for our environment, for our customers, and for our communities.”

The three-fold approach includes:

  • Requiring DTE Gas suppliers to operate at net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, helping to drive an industry-wide change.
  • Creating operational improvements and carbon offsets while continuing to provide customers with safe, affordable, and reliable energy. DTE Gas’s current main renewable program and infrastructure modernization efforts will reduce both methane and combustion-related emissions from the company’s operations. In addition, the company will invest in a combination of renewable natural gas and carbon offsets, such as biosequestration, or capturing and storing carbon in living organisms such as trees.
  • Encouraging customers to reduce their own emissions through energy efficiency programs. The company is also enhancing its voluntary emissions offset program to allow customers to reduce up to 100 percent of their usage emissions through renewable natural gas and carbon offsets. Over time, DTE Gas plans to also leverage technologies such as hydrogen and carbon capture.

DTE’s electric company serves 2.2 million customers in southeast Michigan, and its natural gas company serves 1.3 million customers in Michigan. It plans to reduce carbon dioxide and methane emissions by more than 80 percent by 2040.

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