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DTE Energy donates additional $2.5 million to prepare low-income customers across Michigan for upcoming heating season

Company will hold Customer Assistance Days to provide bill-payment assistance and ongoing education to help customers reduce energy-related expenses

DETROIT, Aug. 24, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- DTE Energy today announced it is donating an additional $2.5 million to The Heat and Warmth Fund (THAW) to help low-income residents across the state of Michigan prepare for the upcoming heating season. This donation – combined with a recent similar donation – is expected to drive enrollment of nearly 6,000 customers in DTE's Low-Income Self Sufficiency Plan (LSP) payment program, which offers fixed monthly payments based on customer income and energy usage.

DTE Energy

Families across Michigan have experienced extremely high temperatures throughout most of the summer, and with the winter months approaching, many low-income customers face concerns about how they will pay their energy bills.

"As we transition from one of our hottest summers on record to the typically harsh conditions of winter in Michigan, we believe it is our responsibility to continue to protect our customers from the dangers – and financial impact – associated with extreme temperatures," said Mark W. Stiers, president and chief operating officer of DTE Gas, DTE Energy. "This $2.5 million donation and our longstanding partnership with The Heat and Warmth Fund will allow us to provide ongoing relief to more than 3,000 low-income families, and to empower those families to reduce energy-related expenses throughout the year." 

The donation will be administered by THAW, and is expected to provide relief to elderly, unemployed, underemployed and disabled DTE customers across Michigan who are struggling to pay their energy bills.

"Through DTE's $2.5 million donation and commitment to delivering safe, reliable energy to families in need, our organization is empowered to help even more families stay warm this winter," said Saunteel Jenkins, chief executive officer, THAW. "Heat and electricity are essential and basic human needs during Michigan winters; our partnership with DTE will allow us to continue to provide energy to – and improve quality of life for – our neighbors in need."

DTE and THAW will work together through the end of 2016 to hold a number of Customer Assistance Days (CADs) in Southeastern and greater Michigan. These events will assist customers with energy payments, and will provide energy efficiency education and job opportunities. CADs will begin in September and will require pre-registration. More information is available here.

More than 35,000 residents were enrolled in DTE Energy's LSP during the 2015-2016 program year. THAW will begin the LSP enrollment process on September 1 for eligible individuals seeking utility assistance this year. Please visit dteenergy.com/lsp for additional program information and for information about the LSP enrollment process.

About DTE Energy

DTE Energy (NYSE: DTE) is a Detroit-based diversified energy company involved in the development and management of energy-related businesses and services nationwide. Its operating units include an electric utility serving 2.2 million customers in Southeastern Michigan and a natural gas utility serving 1.2 million customers in Michigan. The DTE Energy portfolio includes non-utility energy businesses focused on power and industrial projects, natural gas pipelines, gathering and storage, and energy marketing and trading. Information about DTE Energy is available at dteenergy.com, twitter.com/dte_energy and facebook.com

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SOURCE DTE Energy

For further information: Jill Wilmot, DTE Energy, (313) 235-5555