LANSING — Democratic legislators announced the Powering Michigan’s Future legislative package today to build upon the success of Michigan’s thriving clean energy sector which is creating jobs, reining in costs and protecting the health of Michigan kids, families and seniors. The bills will increase Michigan’s use of renewable energy while reducing energy waste.

“Michigan’s clean energy industry has been a true success story and I’m proud to announce the Powering Michigan’s Future legislative package to build upon this success—creating jobs, sparking investment and launching new businesses in our state,” said State Senator Hoon-Yung Hopgood (D-Taylor), Democratic vice chairman of the Senate Energy and Technology Committee. “Expanding our use of renewable energy and energy efficiency will build 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 Rep. Bill LaVoy (D-Monroe), Democratic vice chairman of the House Energy Policy Committee. “Thanks to advances in technology, the cost of renewable energy has declined dramatically over the past five years and families and businesses are saving money by reducing energy waste. Michigan has the highest energy costs in the region and it’s critical that we manage these costs to grow our economy and create jobs.”

The Powering Michigan’s Future legislative package would:

  • Increase Michigan’s renewable energy standard to 20 percent by 2022
  • Double the energy efficiency standard
  • Eliminate the renewable energy surcharge
  • Control energy costs and ensure reliability and affordability

“Michigan’s current clean energy policy expires this year, and the time to act is now to make electricity more affordable and grow our economy,” said Rep. Sam Singh (D-East Lansing). “We have a real opportunity to grow Michigan businesses that are already manufacturing and installing products like energy efficient appliances and windows, and components for wind turbines and solar panels.”

Since 2008, Michigan has seen nearly $3 billion in private-sector investment in clean energy—creating jobs, reining in rising electricity costs and reducing pollution. Advances in technology and private-sector competition are driving down the cost of renewable energy, creating huge opportunities for Michigan families and businesses to save money. Michigan families and businesses will save $1.2 billion over the next three years through reducing energy waste.

“In my community, several innovative energy efficiency companies provide beneficial energy solutions and cost-savings for residents,” said Rep. Julie Plawecki (D-Dearborn Heights).  “These companies also provide highly-sought engineering and manufacturing jobs that boost the local economy.”

“Health professionals across the state are seeing first-hand the dangerous health impacts of our over-reliance on coal,” said Rep. Marcia Hovey-Wright (D-Muskegon). “Michigan gets more than half of its electricity from burning coal and the pollution from coal plants has been linked to 68,000 cases of asthma and 180 premature deaths in Michigan each year. The Powering Michigan’s Future legislative package will reduce dangerous pollution and give Michigan cleaner and healthier air—reducing illness and ultimately saving lives.”

“As a United States Marine Corps veteran, I know first-hand that we place too many men and women into harm’s way to protect and transport fuel,” said Sen. David Knezek (D-Dearborn Heights). “By making the transition to clean, renewable sources of energy here at home, we can reduce our reliance on other nations and improve our national and economic security.”