House Dems Demand Action on ‘Powering Michigan’s Future’ Bills

Legislative package will rein in costs, create jobs, protect Great Lakes
Wednesday, August 19, 2015

LANSING — Democratic legislators called for action today on the Powering Michigan’s Future legislative package to build upon the success of Michigan’s thriving clean energy sector, which is creating jobs, controlling costs and protecting the health of Michigan kids, families and seniors. The bills will help meet goals of the recently announced Clean Power Plan by doubling Michigan’s renewable energy and energy efficiency standards.

“Michigan’s clean energy industry has been a true success — creating good-paying jobs, sparking investment and launching new businesses in our state — and today, we’re calling for a hearing on the Powering Michigan’s Future bills to build upon this success,” said House Democratic Leader Tim Greimel (D-Auburn Hills). “Michigan is well-positioned to meet Clean Power Plan goals by building upon our manufacturing strength, talent and know-how.”

“The Powering Michigan’s Future legislative package is all about saving Michigan families and businesses money by managing rising energy costs,” said state Rep. Bill LaVoy (D-Monroe), Democratic vice chairman of the House Energy Policy Committee. “Today, we’re calling on Gov. Rick Snyder and committee Chairman Aric Nesbitt to pass the Powering Michigan’s Future legislation to help meet the goals of the Clean Power Plan.”

The Powering Michigan’s Future legislative package (House Bills 4055, 4518-4519 and Senate Bills 295-297) would:

  • Increase Michigan’s renewable energy standard to 20 percent by 2022
  • Double the energy efficiency standard
  • Forbid the use of surcharges to meet renewable energy goals
  • Control energy costs and ensure reliability and affordability

“Michigan is one of the worst states in the country when it comes to diseases linked to air pollution, and we must pass an energy policy that reduces pollution and protects the health of our families, children and seniors,” said Jocelyn Hayward, program manager for MI Air MI Health. “Michigan’s asthma rate is 25 percent higher than the national average, and we can’t afford to wait to reduce air pollution by increasing our clean energy standards. The health of all Michiganders — particularly our most vulnerable — depends on it.”

“Michigan is uniquely positioned to meet its goals on energy policy. The Clean Power Plan provides a tremendous opportunity to improve our public health and protect our valuable resources, such as land, air, and water.” said state Rep. Julie Plawecki (D-Dearborn Heights). “Thanks to advances in technology, the cost of renewable energy has declined dramatically over the past several years. This has led to families and businesses saving money by reducing energy waste. Michigan has the highest energy costs in the region, and it’s critical that we manage these costs and promote innovation to grow our economy and create jobs.”