First Feed-In Law Proposed in Michigan

September 24, 2007

Michigan Assemblywoman Kathleen Law has introduced House Bill (HB) 5218 (2007), the Michigan Renewable Energy Sources Act, to the state legislative body. The bill is patterned after a German law and is also similar to legislation passed in the Canadian province of Ontario. Those bills employ advanced renewable energy tariffs, in which the price paid per kilowatt-hour (kWh) differs by the technology used to generate the electricity.

The Michigan bill proposes tariffs that are the same as Germany's and would be the highest on the North American continent. They are:

  • $0.10/kWh for electricity from hydroelectric projects less than 500 kW
  • $0.145/kWh for electricity from biogas projects less than 150 kW
  • $0.19/kWh for electricity from geothermal projects less than 5 megawatts (MW)
  • $0.65/kWh for electricity from rooftop solar installations less than 30 kW
  • $0.71/kWh for electricity from solar cladding less than 30 kW
  • $0.105/kWh for electricity from commercial wind projects
  • $0.25/kWh for electricity from small wind turbines.

The legislation is also the first proposed in the United States to offer wind tariffs that vary by wind resource intensity, based on a system used in France. Such differentiated tariffs are intended to reduce the potential for commercial wind farms at very windy sites to make an excessive profit, but still allow profitable development in less windy areas, such as farmland in Michigan's interior.

The bill has been referred to the Michigan Assembly's Committee on Energy and Technology. Both the state House and Senate must pass the bill, and it must be signed by Governor Jennifer Granholm before becoming law.

For more information, see the text of the bill.

To read more about renewable energy and energy efficiency projects in Michigan, see: