Michigan Renewable Energy Program
Student/Faculty Project Ideas 2007
The Michigan Renewable Energy Program (MREP) offers college students exceptional real-world experience with challenging, resume-building projects, working on cutting edge research. See the list of topics here, or develop your own research proposal.
All MREP meetings are open to the public, and college students & faculty are always welcome to attend. Join meetings in person (usually in Lansing at MPSC offices – I-96 at Exit 104) or by toll-free
teleconference. For schedules, see the MREP Calendar of Events at http://www.michigan.gov/mrep.
Michigan Renewable Energy Atlas
• Help develop a new renewable energy atlas for Michigan. Students with GIS capability will work
with MREP coordinators and the Michigan State Center for Geographic Information to develop
detailed work plans for making a Web-based, interactive system of renewable resource map layers.
See http://www.michigan.gov/cgi and http://greenmaps.org/. For Michigan wind maps, see
Green Energy Education Plans and Programs
• Identify the best available curricula and educational resources and share them with Michigan
consumers, students, and teachers at all levels.
• Help develop information to be posted to or linked to MREP Web site, including modules for a new
MREP-KIDS website. See http://www.mi.gov/mrep.
• Develop and implement specific projects/activities for K-12 students.
• Develop case study reports (in any format, including video) of Michigan specific green energy
projects and developments. Develop CDs or DVDs of Michigan green energy conferences & events.
Biomass Committee 2007
• Continue biomass resource assessment. Collect and report data on specific biomass energy
resources and conversion technologies.
• Identify best practices for biomass energy policy initiatives.
• Identify promising biomass markets and develop comprehensive market development plans. • Complete technology engineering & econometric models – for significant production and use in
Michigan – of plug-in hybrid-electric, bio-fueled vehicles.
Hydroelectricity Committee 2007
; Complete resource assessment for Michigan micro-hydro, using geographic information systems
along with engineering and economic analyses.
Solar Committee 2007
• Develop Michigan solar energy “green map.”
• Develop legislative proposals for solar access and easements, property tax exemptions for
home-scale systems, and fair property tax treatment for commercial-scale systems. • Explore and develop recommendations for solar energy financial incentives, including incentives
for net metering.
• Model value of energy produced from solar systems (and displaced from traditional energy
systems) by time of day, month, year.
Wind Committee 2007
• Identify appropriate capacity values for variable-output energy supplies, such as wind. collect
hourly wind speed data from Michigan weather stations and then calculate 3-year average hourly
production percentages for on-peak and off-peak time periods.
• Identify priorities and write preliminary proposals for Michigan wind energy research. • Model optimum locations for wind energy production in Michigan, given present electric
transmission grid and near-future expansion plans.
Offshore Wind Sub-Committee 2007
• Participate in formation of Great Lakes Offshore Wind Energy Council (beginning Feb. 2006). • Develop a guide to information on permitting.
• Collect and summarize literature on effects of offshore wind energy production on fisheries, wildlife,
recreation, shipping, etc.
• See Potential for MI Offshore Wind Energy at
Economic Impacts Committee 2007
• Complete research paper on the expected effects of global climate change on the Great Lakes.
Review and summarize existing literature from 2004 to the present.
• Complete study on the expected effects on Michigan’s economy from expanded production and
possible manufacturing for the use of in-state renewable resources
Financing Committee 2007
• Develop proposal for renewable energy trust fund.
• Complete state-of-the-art review and economic analysis of existing and near-term
electricity/energy storage technology options.
• Complete “cause-and-effect map” conceptual guide for renewable energy financing (see Osborne &
• Generate requests for results (RFRs) (see Osborne & Hutchinson, 2004)
Ratemaking & Net Metering Committee 2007
• Explore utility financial incentives & performance standards for promoting Michigan renewable
• Research and report on the effects of state-level policies for the support of Renewable Energy. • Net metering program report (due sept 2006). Collect data from utilities, analyze, summarize, and
• Research and report on renewable energy certificates (RECs) and develop a Michigan-specific
proposal for implementing REC trading (see
• Research and report on European style feed-in tariffs and develop a Michigan-specific proposal for
implementing them (see http://glossary.eea.eu.int/EEAGlossary/F/feed-in_tariff).
• http://www.michigan.gov/mrep, • http://www.michigan.gov/energyoffice
& subscribe to MPSC-MREP listserv • http://www.mich.gov/eorenew
• http://www.michigan.gov/netmetering • http://www.mi.gov/biomass
Contact: Tom Stanton, MREP Coordinator
Operations & Wholesale Markets Division, Michigan Public Service Commission firstname.lastname@example.org (517) 241-6086