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GM and Ford to buy wind energy - lots of it - from DTE Energy

Wind turbine
Ken Whytock

General Motors says it is buying enough wind energy from DTE Energy to power its Warren Tech Center and most of its headquarters in Detroit. 

That follows Ford Motor Company's announcement last week that it too will be buying wind power from the utility. The automaker says its contract will power two assembly plants and a number of office buildings, including some on its new Corktown campus in Detroit.

The contracts with DTE Energy will require the utility to either acquire existing wind farms or build a new one. 

GM has said it will have all of its operations on renewable energy globally by 2050 - it's about 20 percent of the way there. Ford Motor Company is expected to make a global renewable sourcing announcement this summer.

Renewable energy contracts not only reduce the carbon emissions attributable to the automakers, they usually also make business sense, since they lock in energy prices for wind, which in most instances is cheaper than electricity made with coal or natural gas.

Editor's note: DTE Energy is one of Michigan Radio's corporate sponsors.

Tracy Samilton covers energy and transportation, including the auto industry and the business response to climate change for Michigan Public. She began her career at Michigan Public as an intern, where she was promptly “bitten by the radio bug,” and never recovered.
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