DETROIT, Nov. 6, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- DTE Energy is partnering with the Port of Monroe to bring new jobs to the area and grow the local economy. Through the agreement, the Port of Monroe will help DTE in its effort to recycle, market and transport gypsum, a bi-product produced by DTE's Monroe Power Plant, to customers throughout the Midwest and Canada.
The partnership has created approximately 30 full time jobs with DRM, a Dundee, Michigan-based company that provides transportation and material handling services for the Port of Monroe. The Port will build a 24,000-square-foot storage building on its property, allowing gypsum customers to have direct shipping access to the material year round.
"We have been seeking a partner who we could work with locally to recycle the hundreds of thousands of tons of gypsum the plant produces annually, and couldn't be more pleased to work with Port of Monroe," said Brian Rice, director at DTE's Monroe Power Plant. "Local impact and community growth are extremely important to DTE, and this collaboration is just one example of how we are a force for growth in the communities in which we live and serve."
The Port of Monroe represents the first and last mile of the transportation supply chain in the region, said Paul LaMarre, Port of Monroe Director. "With DTE Energy's Monroe Power Plant serving as the Port's largest cargo generator and one of the area's primary economic drivers, our synergies are limitless. This agreement is just one example of collaborative opportunities and will ensure that a product produced within the Port also passes across our docks," LaMarre said.
Gypsum is a bi-product produced by Monroe Power Plant's flue gas desulfurization (FGD) system, which removes more than 90 percent of the plant's sulfur dioxide emissions. Gypsum is used widely in the construction industry for producing drywall and in the production of cement. Recently, Midwestern farmers have found gypsum to be a valuable soil amendment, leading to more demand and a larger market for the product. In 2014, DTE recycled more than 350,000 tons of gypsum.
"I commend DTE Energy and the Port of Monroe for their efforts to bring a recycled product to market with the creation of full-time jobs in Monroe," Monroe Mayor Bob Clark said.
DTE's Monroe Power Plant, one of the five largest coal plants in the country, is the only plant in Michigan operating an FGD system and producing gypsum, creating a unique opportunity for Michigan's only port on Lake Erie.
Local community leaders were in attendance for a tour of the Monroe Power Plant, showcasing the process and economic impact in action.
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 2.1 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. As one of Michigan's leading corporate citizens, DTE Energy is a force for growth and prosperity in the 450 Michigan communities it serves in a variety of ways, including philanthropy, volunteerism and economic progress. Information about DTE Energy is available at dteenergy.com, twitter.com/dte_energy and facebook.com/dteenergy.
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SOURCE DTE Energy