MICHIGAN — A coalition of local activists and organizations kicked off a ballot initiative seeking to incrementally raise Michigan’s renewable energy portfolio standard to 30 percent by 2030. The group, called Clean Energy, Healthy Michigan, will organize Michiganders to support the initiative on the ballot in November 2018. The initiative would protect Michigan’s clean air and water as well as help curb utility costs for families.
“Good paying jobs as solar installers and wind technicians will come from more renewable energy, said John Sarver, solar owner and member of the non-profit Great Lakes Renewable Energy Association. “Eighteen other states have a renewable energy requirement greater than Michigan. We can do better and become a leader in promoting clean energy.”
The proposal will require electric providers gradually increase the amount of renewable energy they provide to 30 percent by 2030. Providers will have to use solar, wind, biomass, hydropower, and municipal solid waste or landfill gas to reach these standard. Pet coke, scrap tires, coal waste, or other hazardous waste will not qualify for the standard. These aspects of the proposal will provide public health and environmental protections for families in Michigan for generations to come, and will strengthen and preserve our abundance of natural resources.
Michiganders will also be protected from electric providers passing much of the cost of compliance on to them. The proposal requires that providers not charge residential customers more than an average of $2 per month to implement the renewable energy standard.
“As this campaign gets up and running, we are excited to work with many local leaders and activists who care about keeping the Great Lakes State a place where everyone can enjoy its natural beauty, while actively combating threats to our natural resources and public health,” said John Freeman, who is helping lead the effort. “Our intent is to give the people of Michigan a voice in the climate debate, and this initiative will provide that opportunity.”
The proposal has been submitted to the State Board of Canvassers and signature collection will begin immediately.