||A major contributor to this article appears to have a close connection with its subject. (September 2015)|
|Traded as||NYSE: CMS|
|Headquarters||Jackson, Michigan, United States|
|John G. Russell
Thomas J. Webb
(Chief Financial Officer)
|US$1.152 Billion (2014)|
|US$477 Million (2014)|
CMS Energy (NYSE: CMS), based in Jackson, Michigan, is an energy company that is focused principally on utility operations in Michigan. Its principal business is Consumers Energy, a public utility that provides electricity and natural gas to more than 6 million of Michigan’s 10 million residents. Its non-utility businesses are focused primarily on domestic independent power production. Consumers Energy has operated since 1886.
CMS Energy was formed in 1987 as a holding company with its principal subsidiaries as Consumers Energy and CMS Enterprises. On October 23, 1987, CMS Energy became a publicly owned company and was listed at the New York Stock Exchange. The company’s history dates back to 1886, when William Augustine Foote and Samuel Jarvis initially approached Jackson, Michigan officials and asked them to support efforts to illuminate Jackson’s downtown with electric arc lights. With the early success of their first project, they formed a company, Jackson Electric Light Works in 1888 to focus on the large scale energy projects. In 1889, Foote and Jarvis built their first large scale hydro plant project at the Trowbridge Dam on the Kalamazoo River. Foote, after seeing some early success, began consolidating his small power companies and formed Commonwealth Power Company.
In 1907, Foote and Jarvis built Croton Hydro project on the Muskegon River, the first project in the world that could transmit 110,000 volts of electricity. They focused on expanding their power business and its reach. In 1920, Foote and Jarvis offered preferred shares of their company to the public to secure sufficient financing to enter other energy and power generation sectors. Over the next several decades the company built several coal-fired, natural gas, nuclear and electric facilities. In 1946, the company formed a strategic partnership with Panhandle Company to convert former natural gas fields to underground natural gas storage areas. CMS Energy’s primary subsidiary, Consumers Energy, announced Michigan's first nuclear power plant in 1961, Big Rock Point in Charlevoix, Michigan. The plant was capable of producing 67 megawatts of electricity. The plant's construction was completed in 2.5 years and electricity was first generated December 8, 1962. Generation continued until August 29, 1997.
The company announced another nuclear plant, Palisades Nuclear Generating Station on Lake Michigan, which first produced electricity in December, 1971 to serve 400,000 people a day. CMS Energy owned the plant until 2006, when it was sold to Entergy. It then announced a gas reforming plant to furnish heat for Michigan homes in 1971. This plant was the first of its kind in North America to produce synthetic gas, converting impure liquid petroleum into pipeline-quality natural gas.
In 1987, CMS Energy, a holding company with its principal subsidiaries as Consumers Power and CMS Enterprises was formed. Consumers Power was rebranded Consumers Energy in 1997. The firm was one of the first companies to introduce an online billing system in the late 1990s, and its billing system was named to the 2000 Information Technology Innovation Collection by Smithsonian National Museum.
In 2003, the firm moved its headquarters to One Energy Plaza in Jackson, Michigan. In 2007, the company announced plans to invest $6 billion in Michigan’s energy future to support new power plant technology and identify new energy sources. In 2014, Consumers Energy opened Cross Winds Energy Park in Michigan’s Tuscola County and signed a contract with General Electric to supply 621.79-megawatt wind turbine engines for the project.
Sustainability and Environment
In 2015, 9 percent of CMS Energy’s power comes from renewable energy sources. Primary CMS Energy subsidiary Consumers Energy joined the Wildlife Habitat Council as an active member. By 2007, all power facilities received the Clean Corporate Citizen award from the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality.
Consumers Energy, CMS Energy’s primary subsidiary, was named Energy Star Partner of the Year in 2014 and 2015 for excellence in sustainable energy efficiency programs. In 2014, Consumers Energy was ranked among the top 15 most sustainable energy providers. Later that year, CMS Energy received Edison Electric Institute’s Index Award for top cumulative shareholder return in the small cap category. The firm received the 2015 Emergency Recovery Award for its electricity restoration efforts during the 2013 North American ice storm .
In 2002, CMS Energy was awarded the Ig Nobel Prize in Economics for "adapting the mathematical concept of imaginary numbers for use in the business world".
In December 2011, the non-partisan organization Public Campaign criticized CMS Energy for spending $3.48 million on lobbying and not paying any taxes during 2008-2010, instead getting $29 million in tax rebates, despite making a profit of $415 million, and increasing executive pay by 79% to $900.4 million in 2010 for its top 5 executives.
CMS Energy has helped establish and finance numerous research, educational and cultural institutes in the United States. Consumers Energy was given the William Booth Award in 2013 by The Salvation Army in recognition of its long history of philanthropic activities and leadership for the PeopleCare assistance program.
CMS Energy has promoted quality internship and cooperative education programs to build career opportunities in Michigan. Consumers Energy has also worked on early childhood development and education in Michigan and has also received Wildlife Habitat Council (WHC) compliant certificates for its efforts to promote environmental education.
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