2018-03-11 / Marketplace

DTE to use renewable energy to power Little Caesars Arena for NHL’s ‘Green Month’

Little Caesars Arena features a center hung scoreboard that measures at 5,100 square feet. The arena also features 45 LED displays covering more than 13,500 square feet. At left is the DeMille Solar Array in southwest Lapeer.Little Caesars Arena features a center hung scoreboard that measures at 5,100 square feet. The arena also features 45 LED displays covering more than 13,500 square feet. At left is the DeMille Solar Array in southwest Lapeer.DETROIT — DTE Energy is turning Little Caesars Arena (LCA) “green” by providing renewable energy partially generated in Lapeer for the Detroit Red Wings’ five home games played in March, reducing LCA’s carbon footprint for NHL “Green Month.”

Designating March as “Green Month” is part of NHL Green, a league-wide initiative to address major environmental challenges — like climate change — and to encourage stadiums, hockey teams and fans to reduce waste, recycle and live more sustainably.

“The Red Wings, like many of our customers, are looking for ways to minimize their environmental impact,” said Irene Dimitry, vice president of Business Planning and Development. “As a company, we know we can play an active, critical role in reducing impacts to our environment — especially climate change. We’ve started work on our own long-term plan to reduce carbon emissions by more than 80 percent by 2050, and renewable, cleaner energy plays a significant role in meeting this goal.”

Before LCA opened, DTE built a new substation, along with a customized underground electrical system, to power the multi-use facility and its high-tech entertainment features. The arena’s state-of-the art electrical system allows arena staff to monitor the venue’s energy load and reroute power as needed.

Among its many energy saving features, the arena has more than 16.5 million LED lights.

DTE launched MIGreenPower in April 2017 to provide customers with an easy and affordable way to support more renewable energy. Customers who join MIGreenPower can reduce their electricity-based carbon footprint and attribute up to 100 percent of their energy use to DTE’s newest renewable energy projects in Michigan, including the Pinnebog Wind Park, located in Huron County, and three solar arrays located in Lapeer and Detroit. The program is open to all DTE full service business and residential electric customers.

Fans who are DTE customers will have an opportunity to sign up for the MIGreenPower program by visiting the DTE Energy information booth located at Little Caesars Arena in the Via area of the concourse that evening as well as home games on Tuesday, March 20, Thursday, March 22 and Saturday, March 31.

As part of DTE’s carbon reduction initiative, the company plans to add 4,000 megawatts of renewable energy to its power capacity, including the Pine River wind park. Located in mid-Michigan, Pine River will be DTE’s largest and most cost-effective wind project to date and the company’s first since the passage of Michigan’s new energy legislation requiring energy providers to achieve a renewable portfolio standard of 12.5 percent by 2019 and 15 percent by 2021. DTE has plans to increase its wind generation capacity by adding another project in early 2020 and is well-positioned to exceed the state’s 2021 target while maintaining reliability and affordability for its 2.2 million electric customers.

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