CMS Energy

    CMS Energy Corp. history, profile and history video

     CMS Energy Corp. is an energy company. The company operates its business through three segments: Electric Utility, Gas Utility and Enterprises. The Electric Utility segment generates, purchases, distributes and sells electricity. Its customer base consists of a mix of residential, commercial, and diversified industrial customers in Michigan’s Lower Peninsula. The Gas Utility segment is engaged in the purchase, transmission, storage, distribution, and sale of natural gas. Its customer base consists of a mix of residential, commercial, and diversified industrial customers in Michigan’s Lower Peninsula. The Enterprises segment engages primarily in independent power generation and owns power generation facilities fueled by natural gas and biomass through its various subsidiaries and certain equity investments. CMS Energy was founded in 1987 and is headquartered in Jackson, MI.

    “CMS Energy History

    More than 125 years ago, W.A. Foote, our company’s founder, introduced his vision for revolutionizing the energy industry. He loaned his Adrian, Mich. flour mill to a small electric company to help generate electricity for a dozen street lights.

    It was Foote’s goal to develop a unified energy network that would link communities and farms statewide in the future.

    1886: Foote introduces the use of electricity in place of natural gas to power street lights in Adrian. He and his brother, James Foote, envision creating an interconnected electric system with hydroelectric power throughout Michigan.

    1898-1899: Foote and his company start excavating Trowbridge Dam on the Kalamazoo River. Upon completion of the dam, electricity generated from Trowbridge travels 22 miles over iron wire to Kalamazoo.

    1910: Foote and other energy industry pioneers establish Consumers Power Co. They sell shares of stock to customers at $95 a share and provide a dividend of $7 a share in 1920.

    1927: Consumers Power dedicates its new headquarters building in downtown Jackson, Mich. after Foote’s death.

    1931: Consumers Power discovers an abundant supply of natural gas in Michigan. By the 1940s, Consumers Power also taps into an interstate natural gas pipeline to access reserves from the Southwest and Gulf Coast.

    1940s: In 1946, Consumers Power and the Eastern Panhandle Pipeline Co. form Michigan Gas Storage Co. and convert gas fields to underground storage areas.

    1950-1975: Consumers Power’s electric customers increase by 80 percent, while natural gas customers increase by more than 100 percent. The company adds 19 generating units to serve the electric power needs of customers.

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    1987-1997: A new holding company, CMS Energy, is created in 1987 to oversee Consumers Power along with a nonutility, non-regulated subsidiary called CMS Enterprises. It acquires assets in 20 countries on five continents and changes the utility’s name to Consumers Energy.

    1997-2007: Consumers Energy reintroduces 14 pairs of trumpeter swans into reservoirs behind Alcona, Loud, Cooke and Foote dams. The company earns an Environmental Business Award from the Michigan Audubon Society.

    2007: Four fossil-fuel generating plants – Whiting, Campbell, Cobb and Karn/Weadock – are designated a Clean Corporate Citizens by the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality.

    2007: Consumers Energy files the Balanced Energy Initiative (BEI) with the Michigan Public Service Commission. BEI is a comprehensive plan to meet customers’ power needs over the next 20 years with a balanced energy portfolio, including expanded renewable energy, demand management and energy efficiency.

    2008: CMS Energy focuses on making investments in Consumers Energy and Michigan as part of its “Growing Forward” strategy, which calls for investing $7 billion in the state by 2017. That includes significant investments in energy efficiency, renewable energy, and environmental and customer service enhancements.

    2008: The Whiting plant earns a Neighborhood Environmental Partners Program Gold Award from Michigan’s Department of Environmental Quality for the fourth consecutive year.

    2009: Consumers Energy lays the groundwork for harnessing Michigan’s wind to generate clean, renewable electricity. It secures easements in Mason and Tuscola counties to build the Lake Winds Energy Park® and the Cross Winds Energy Park™. Lake Winds, a 100-megawatt project, began operating in late 2012. Cross Winds will begin construction in 2014.

    2013: Consumers Energy announced the purchase of an existing combined cycle 540-megawatt natural gas plant in Jackson, MI. The purchase of an existing plant was chosen over building a new plant to save customers about $500 million.”

    *Information from and

    **Video published on YouTube by “Consumers Energy



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