DTE Energy has launched a pilot program offering rebates of up to $5,000 for customers of MichCon, its natural gas utility, on products and services to help conserve energy. A limited number of $250 rebates will be available to customers who purchase high-efficiency furnaces or who have a professional energy audits performed on their homes. The company also is offering six rebates of $5,000 to builders that construct energy efficient homes. As many as 200 homeowners who replace their existing furnaces with high-efficiency natural gas models will be eligible for a rebate of $250 each. The new furnaces have to be installed by a licensed dealer and have an efficiency rating of at least 93%. As many as 100 homeowners who have an energy analysis performed will be eligible for a $250 rebate each. Only homes built prior to Dec. 31, 1999 are eligible for the program, and homeowners have to complete at least one of the recommendations identified during the energy audit. DTE also is offering six rebates of $5,000 each to licensed Michigan builders that construct homes built to federal Energy Star standards. Energy Star identifies and promotes energy efficient products and practices.
Despite his oft-repeated opposition to the measure, President Bush last week signed into law legislation (HR 6022) temporarily suspending deliveries of crude oil to the Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR) in an attempt to ease gasoline prices. The new law will suspend SPR shipments until either the end of the year or when crude oil prices dip below $75/bbl. The president's action came only days after Congress overwhelmingly passed the bill (see NGI, May 19). The strong support from both sides of the aisle to suspend SPR shipments was a significant departure for Republicans, who in the past have opposed discontinuing SPR shipments to help relieve gasoline prices. Democrats, on the other hand, have traditionally believed that suspending SPR shipments would ease prices in the market. Temporarily discontinuing SPR deliveries will make 70,000 b/d available to the market, which Republicans have called a mere drop in the bucket that would have little impact on gasoline prices. U.S. crude oil futures for July delivery were trading at $132.90 early Friday -- more than twice the price of a year ago.
Intelligence Press Inc. All rights reserved. The preceding news report
may not be republished or redistributed, in whole or in part, in any
form, without prior written consent of Intelligence Press, Inc.