The guiding principle of the Energy Network is to provide education and information about the issues relating to energy utilization, production, infrastructure, economics, efficiency and conservation and the impact on northwestern lower Michigan region.
The Grand Vision Energy Network is a diversified group including members from utility companies and conservation groups.
Goals of the Energy Network
Our goal is two-fold: first, we aim to keep all perspectives around the table. Second, we provide unbiased information so residents can form educated opinions and help shape the type of power generation scenario they think is best for the region.
The main goal of the Energy Network can be summed up in one word – education. Our aim is to educate the citizens of northwest lower Michigan on a wide variety of energy topics so they can make informed decisions about our region’s energy future and their own personal energy choices. Energy is responsible for our quality of life and these issues affect every one of us. The Energy Network consistently offers a chance for people to involve and educate themselves on these issues through meetings, outreach and other events.
The Grand Vision Energy Network: Partnerships in Motion
Here is an illustration of the many partners who are working together to create a resilient energy future. Click here (PDF).
Energy education efforts were showcased in a student video shown at the Grand Vision Your Action event in Traverse City in September. The video was produced for the Grand Vision Energy Network by Kyle Huggett, a student at NMC and the University Center.
What Else is the Energy Network Doing to Educate People?
We host an Energy Education Lecture Series featuring speakers on energy issues affecting Northwest Michigan. These lectures provide a great opportunity for people to learn about energy issues from the experts. The Lecture Series takes place at the Northwestern Michigan College campus on a monthly basis, from September to May. All events are open to the public and are free of charge.
- State of the State’s Energy Infrastructure – John Sarver
- Tools to Finance Renewable Energy – Craig Lewis
- Energy Efficiency – Brian Keane
- Regional Energy Expo
- Natural Gas Hydraulic Fracturing – Hal Fitch
- Energy Economics in Michigan – Dr. Martin Kushler
Energy Efficiency For Local Governments
The Energy Efficiency for Local Governments, a project made possible by the Michigan Public Service Commission and Northwest Michigan Council of Governments, is beginning to see energy and cost savings results after one year in operation. The participants in the project included nine counties and thirteen cities, villages and townships. The local governments received at least $40,000 to $80,000 in funding for:
- Technical assistance
- 1-3 energy audits
- Capital energy conservation and efficiency upgrades
- The development of a quantified energy action plan with a five year reinvestment strategy
- The establishment of a dedicated energy savings account with at least 50% of the annual savings
Comparing the 2011 reports to the 2009 baselines with an average of 12% weather adjusted energy reduction, six out of the nine counties - Antrim, Charlevoix, Grand Traverse, Manistee, Missaukee and Wexford shows $113,257 in documented annual energy savings. The projected average after five years is 130% return on investment.
Click to view a video Energy Efficiency Practice and Policies, which provides a general framework to begin the building of a comprehensive management strategy or an energy action plan.
How Can You Get Involved with the Energy Network?
We hold monthly meetings where people can learn about the energy issues facing our region and get involved in the future of energy in Northwest Michigan. The meetings provide a great opportunity for the public to learn about all things energy.
Grand Vision Energy Network Convener Ed Bailey, Technical Division Director at Northwestern Michigan College and director of NMC's Renewable Energy Program