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Consumers Energy Releases Two Dozen Young Turtles Rescued during Mid-Michigan Pipeline Project

WEBBERVILLE, Mich., June 3, 2024 /PRNewswire/ -- With a hand from some young helpers, Consumers Energy recently released two dozen little turtles back into their natural habitat after they were rescued during construction of the energy provider's Mid-Michigan Pipeline Project.

Consumers Energy Logo (PRNewsFoto/Consumers Energy)
Consumers Energy Logo (PRNewsFoto/Consumers Energy)

Several children of Consumers Energy employees joined the turtle release in rural Ingham County. The turtles came from eggs of adult females carefully removed from the pipeline path and were incubated and nurtured by Chelsea-based Herpetological Resource and Management (HRM) with help from Sea Life Michigan Aquarium.

"It's become something of a tradition for us at Consumers Energy to release turtles back into the wild each year, and we're proud to do our part to preserve them as part of our commitment to sustainable construction practices," said Brandon Hofmeister, Consumers Energy's senior vice president of strategy, sustainability and external affairs. "We're conscious of our role in protecting Michigan's wildlife and are committed to efforts like this because we know it's right for our customers, the communities we serve and the planet."


A video of the release can be viewed here.

Last fall, Consumers Energy released 56 turtles rescued during the project. More recently, HRM rescued and incubated 24 turtle eggs. Blanding's turtles are a protected species in Michigan. While they can live more than 80 years, they also have a maturity period of 15 to 20 years, which makes them particularly vulnerable to predators.

Since 2009, Consumers Energy has worked with HRM to protect and manage wetland wildlife along the path of its construction projects. Over the course of two years on the Saginaw Trail Pipeline, Consumers Energy and HRM saved more than 30 Blanding's Turtle eggs before returning mature juveniles to the habitat after construction was completed and rescued/relocated nearly 30,000 amphibians and reptiles out of the construction pathway.

Consumers Energy's Mid-Michigan Pipeline replaces about 55 miles of natural gas pipeline in Washtenaw, Livingston, Ingham, Shiawassee and Clinton counties. The two-phase, $550 million project will replace vintage 20-inch pipeline dating back to the 1940s with new 36-inch pipeline that helps us move natural gas more quickly, safely and efficiently. The project is slated for completion this fall.

Consumers Energy is Michigan's largest energy provider, providing natural gas and/or electricity to 6.8 million of the state's 10 million residents in all 68 Lower Peninsula counties. Consumers Energy's Clean Energy Plan calls for eliminating coal as an energy source by 2025, achieving net-zero carbon emissions and meeting 90% of customers' energy needs through clean sources, including wind and solar.

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SOURCE Consumers Energy