After having weathered two tough economic years, DTE Energy is now poised to focus squarely on the future, its CEO told shareholders Thursday at the company’s annual meeting.

Gerard M. Anderson said that investing in energy systems and infrastructure will energize the state for decades to come. And as one of the largest investors of capital in Michigan, DTE Energy has also made investments across the country to expand and diversify the company.

“Our largest investments this year — and, it’s likely for the next five years — are targeted at improved environmental quality,” Anderson said. “Specifically, we are investing heavily in our existing power plants to reduce emissions and we are making significant investments in adding renewables to our portfolio of Michigan power generation sources.”

Anderson acknowledged that the company and its employees are keenly aware that many customers are struggling to pay their bills.

“One of our jobs is to work closely with policy makers to balance the pace of environmental and technical progress on the one hand, with the affordability of energy on the other, especially for our low-income customers,” he said.

Anderson added that the company is working hard to strike that balance responsibly, and has launched an aggressive community outreach program to churches, community centers, block clubs and other organizations to connect customers in need with every available form of financial assistance.

“Our company plays a unique and fundamental role in the communities we serve,” Anderson concluded. “As we play that role, our employees know that I have two overarching aspirations for DTE Energy – that we be the best-operated energy company in North America, and that we serve as a force for growth, investment and renewed prosperity in the communities we serve.”

DTE also announced that its board of directors had boosted its dividend to 5.875 cents per share of common stock, from teh previous dividend of 5.6 cents per share. The new, higher dividend will be paid July 15 to shareholders of record as of the close fo business June 20.

DTE Energy (NYSE: DTE) is a Detroit-based diversified energy company. Its operating units include Detroit Edison, an electric utility serving 2.1 million customers in Southeastern Michigan, MichCon, a natural gas utility serving 1.2 million customers in Michigan, and other non-utility, energy businesses focused on gas storage and pipelines, unconventional gas production, power and industrial projects, and energy trading.

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