DETROIT, April 01, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- DTE Energy helped approximately 5,000 vulnerable customers lower their energy bills in 2020 while significantly reducing natural gas and electricity usage. Now the program that delivered these results, DTE’s Energy Efficiency Assistance (EEA), has earned an award from the Midwest Energy Efficiency Alliance (MEEA) recognizing its efforts to keep energy affordable for thousands of the company’s most in-need customers.
“DTE has made significant and measurable contributions to the well-being of many of their most vulnerable customers,” said Stacey Paradis, MEEA executive director. “MEEA applauds their efforts, thanks them for their dedication, and wants to share their caring approach to meet customer needs with others through the recognition of this award.”
DTE invested over $23 million across 2019 and 2020 in program incentives to support single family, income-qualified customers with the help of community action agencies and nonprofit organizations across Michigan. The EEA program served approximately 4,700 limited income customers in 2019 and another 5,000 in 2020. The program achieved over 50,000 MCF net gas savings and 75,000 MWH in net electric savings in 2020 alone.
“The DTE EEA initiatives are helping those hit hardest from job loss due to COVID-19 layoffs,” said John Boladian, director of Energy Efficiency at DTE. “COVID-19 certainly impacted 2020, but our partner community organizations were resilient and quickly ramped up to meet the need once it was safe to do so. During a crisis like this pandemic, DTE strives to be a beacon of hope in the community for the many families impacted by COVID-19.”
In 2020, DTE identified a need to further support the low-income community in Detroit and across Michigan and increased the budget, savings and participation goals for the EEA program. It provided income-qualified customers with appliances such as high efficiency furnaces, water heaters, and services like home weatherization updates at no cost to the customer. This program is delivered through more than 40 community action, non-profit and government agencies.
The Michigan Public Service Commission approved DTE to spend 1% of the overall Energy Waste Reduction budget to address health and safety issues that typically prevented customer participation in the EEA Program. This initiative reduced the number of uncompleted projects due to mold, asbestos, pest control, roof repair and other determents.
DTE is partnering with the Detroit Community Health Corps to assist customers who were negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic with products and services through the EEA program. The company is also working with the City of Detroit, Detroit Water and Sewerage Department, University of Michigan, and other community organizations on a pilot to provide greater wrap-around services to Detroit residents in need. DTE has also worked with the United Community Housing Coalition (UCHC) to help keep 550 Detroiters from falling into home tax foreclosure.
Another significant component to the program is DTE’s LED light bulb distribution program. In 2020 alone, DTE distributed more than 350,000 LED light bulbs to patrons of food banks and local community events.
“We feel fortunate to be able to offer these income-qualified programs to DTE customers who are most in need,” continued Boladian. “DTE is proud to serve our community with meaningful economic relief when the need for assistance is greater than ever.”
To learn more about DTE’s income-qualified programs, visit dteenergy.com/eeassistance .
About DTE Energy
DTE Energy (NYSE: DTE) is a Detroit-based diversified energy company involved in the development and management of energy-related businesses and services nationwide. Its operating units include an electric company serving 2.2 million customers in Southeast Michigan and a natural gas company serving 1.3 million customers in Michigan. The DTE portfolio includes energy businesses focused on power and industrial projects; renewable natural gas; natural gas pipelines, gathering and storage; and energy marketing and trading. As an environmental leader, DTE utility operations will reduce carbon dioxide and methane emissions by more than 80 percent by 2040 to produce cleaner energy while keeping it safe, reliable and affordable. DTE Electric and Gas aspires to achieve net zero carbon and greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. DTE is committed to serving with its energy through volunteerism, education and employment initiatives, philanthropy and economic progress. Information about DTE is available at dteenergy.com , empoweringmichigan.com , twitter.com/dte_energy and facebook.com .
Kimberly HuffmanDTE Energy313.235.5555