DTE Energy is boosting its renewable energy efforts with a $500 million investment in wind power infrastructure in Michigan's "thumb." The state's largest utility plans to install 137 wind turbines at four wind farms in Huron and Sanilac counties.

The turbines will be supplied by General Electric, which announced the deal Monday at the American Wind Energy Association's Windpower 2012 conference in Atlanta, Ga.

The equipment will have a total capacity of 220 megawatts and will help the company fulfill its obligation to meet the state's requirement of generating 10 percent of its energy from renewable sources by 2015. (Some renewable energy proponents are pushing Michigan to up its requirements to 25 percent by 2025, but DTE opposes that effort.)

MLive reports the first 69 turbines will be installed in Sigel, Minden and McKinley townships by the end of this year, with 68 additional units expected to be placed in Chandler Township by 2013 -- although that project still needs state approval.

"We're looking forward to working with GE and its wind turbine technology," Irene Dimitry, DTE Energy executive director, said in a release. "The contract with GE also provides the benefit of having the same technology platform on all four wind parks."

DTE Energy has been working with landowners in the region to acquire rights to operate wind farms since 2007 and has received permission to operate wind power facilities on more than 80,000 acres of land.

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