November 16, 2022

New utility collaborative offers cash incentives to promote smart energy choices

Member Utilities

The Energy Innovation Collaborative was designed to help customers lower utility bills and their carbon footprint.

Seven utilities in Michigan are leading the way when it comes to sustainable energy use in the Upper Peninsula. Combining efforts, they have launched the Energy Innovation Collaborative (EIC). The EIC is a rewards program offering utility customers cash-back incentives for energy-saving, renewable energy, and beneficial electrification equipment and services. Incentives are being offered to both residential and commercial customers.

The members of the EIC are all not-for-profit, electric utilities that are owned and operated by the communities they serve. The membership includes Baraga Electric Utility, Crystal Falls Electric Department, Gladstone Power & Light, L’Anse Electric Utility, Negaunee Electric Department, Norway Dept. of Power and Light, and Ontonagon County REA.

“These seven utilities had a vision to become industry leaders when it comes to promoting sustainability in the UP, and it has been really rewarding to see their concept turn into a reality,” shared Brett Niemi, senior energy services manager for WPPI Energy, a supporter of the project. “Customers participating in the program will be able to offset some of their initial costs, and the energy efficient upgrades will continue to save them money by lowering their utility bills well into the future.”

Products that qualify for cash rebates include electric vehicle chargers, solar panels, LED lighting, Energy STAR appliances such air conditioners, clothes washers and dryers, refrigerators and freezers, HVAC equipment, and more.

“In the past, we only provided incentives promoting energy efficiency, and the EIC brings it to the next level,” said LeAnn LeClaire, village manager of Baraga. “We want to help our friends and neighbors in the area use electricity responsibly, without sacrificing comfort or convenience. The EIC helps us accomplish that goal.”

Visit for a full list of products and associated rebates.


Pictured: Baraga, Mich.