Cadillac Renewable Energy can produce up to 38 MW of power – enough for 26,000 average homes. It employs 22 people at the power plant and more than 90 other full-time jobs related to handling, processing and transporting up to 400,000 tons of wood the plant buys each year from local vendors. It was built in 1993 in the Cadillac Industrial Park.
The concept for Cadillac Renewable Energy originated with a need to clean up contaminated ground water created by legacy industries, such as metal plating. The idea was for the power plant to draw the water from a well, use it in the cooling towers, treat it, and then discharge the clean effluent into the City Sewer system. While technical issues thwarted that plan, the Plant property taxes allowed for the funding of an off site cleanup process to be built and operated. This cultivated a partnership between the city and investors resulting in construction of the plant.
There are 22 full time employees at the plant including dozer operators, technicians and control room operators, plus maintenance, management and administration personnel. It uses 100 percent non-chemically treated waste wood for its energy, and the wood ash is used locally as a fertilizer.
The plant is owned, managed and operated by Boston-based Atlantic Power Corporation.
Cadillac Renewable Energy sells its power to Consumers Energy and is a significant source of dispatchable, carbon neutral renewable power. It provides a local market for low-value wood fiber, such as tops and limbs left over from timber harvest, plus bark, sawdust and similar wood byproducts generated from the forest products industry in the area. It spends about $5.8 million a year with local wood vendors.
Cadillac Renewable Energy operates under a comprehensive operating permit issued by the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality. The permit puts strict limits and enforceable monitoring on all air emissions of the facility.
Cadillac Renewable Energy is the largest taxpayer in the Cadillac area, and its fuel market and payroll are important to the surrounding areas of Manistee, Missaukee, Osceola and Wexford counties. It provides jobs, a market for fuel wood, and supports the community through property taxes and the goods and services it buys from local businesses, helping them grow. As an example, the plant hired Cadillac Fab tore-build part of the power plant. As a result of the experience gained by Cadillac Fab working with Cadillac Renewable Energy, Cadillac Fab is being hired by power plants around the state.
Being a good neighbor is important to Cadillac Renewable Energy. It participates in local business organizations, contributes to local fundraisers and sponsors youth athletic teams.
Cadillac Renewable Energy
Cadillac, MI 49601