December 22, 2010

Groups Ask Snyder To Support Clean Energy Jobs

December 22, 2010 

Groups Ask Snyder To Support Clean Energy Jobs

Letter Focuses On Incoming Administration’s Coal Plant Policies



LANSING, MI—Twelve citizens groups representing hundreds of thousands of Michigan residents today delivered a letter to Governor-Elect Rick Snyder asking him to continue state policies that require consideration of energy alternatives and the need for more energy as part of the process of issuing permits for new coal plants.

The letter to Snyder was sent by leading environmental and energy groups representing citizens from through the state.
“Coal plants are a barrier to economic progress and a hazard to public health,” said the groups in their letter.  “To attract clean energy jobs, Michigan must send a strong signal that our future lies in energy efficiency, wind, solar, advanced battery, and other clean energy technologies – not outdated, 19th-century coal.”

Snyder was urged to support state energy policies that are:
  • Protecting Michigan ratepayers from expensive and unneeded power sources when cheaper alternatives are available;
  • Creating much-needed clean energy jobs in one of the fastest-growing sectors of the global economy; and
  • Improving public health by reducing dangerous emissions and pollution from the power sector that causes illness and contributes to climate change.
Organizations that wrote to Snyder are:
The full text of the letter follows.


Thursday, December 22, 2010

Honorable Rick Snyder, Governor-Elect
State of Michigan
VIA FACSIMILE

Dear Governor-Elect Snyder:
We the undersigned urge you to support Michigan’s path to a clean energy future by continuing to require a thorough analysis of the need for and alternatives to new sources of power before they are built.
State and federal law require consideration of feasible and prudent alternatives to new polluting energy sources like coal plants.  Examination of the need for new power is part of such consideration of alternatives, and is essential for Michigan’s clean energy future.

 Studying both the demand for new power and alternative sources of energy for meeting such demand is vital to Michigan for the following reasons:

  • Protecting Michigan ratepayers from expensive and unneeded power sources when cheaper alternatives are available;
  • Creating much-needed clean energy jobs in one of the fastest-growing sectors of the global economy; and
  • Improving public health by reducing dangerous emissions and pollution from the power sector that causes illness and contributes to climate change.

Coal plants are a barrier to economic progress and a hazard to public health. To attract clean energy jobs, Michigan must send a strong signal that our future lies in energy efficiency, wind, solar, advanced battery, and other clean energy technologies – not outdated, 19th-century coal. Policies such as Executive Directive 2009-02 that provide for the study of the need for and alternatives to new sources of generation are a reasonable, common-sense measure that will help Michigan accomplish its goal of building a robust clean energy sector while protecting ratepayers and our “Pure Michigan” natural resources.

As a technology leader and innovator, you understand how important it is to seize opportunities before others and how essential it is to make wise and measured business decisions.   Michigan businesses and families cannot afford to shoulder the high utility bills it will take to cover the cost of unneeded coal plants with price tags in the billions.  Not only will Michigan lose out on attracting new business, but also high energy costs from unneeded plants will drive out our existing companies.

Moreover, when it comes to growing more clean energy jobs, Michigan cannot afford to delay.  By devoting limited resources toward building new coal plants that would operate for the next 50 years, Michigan will be giving up clean energy jobs to other states and countries.

Investors large and small are eagerly preparing to play larger roles in the U.S. clean energy sector. At the same time, other nations such as China, South Korea and India are ramping up their commitments to clean energy and are poised to surpass the United States in this vital sector. China is investing $12.6 million an hour to grow its clean energy sector. Meanwhile, only six of the top 30 wind, solar and advanced battery manufacturers are based in the United States, even though U.S. innovation planted the seed for key clean energy technologies.

Clean energy is already one of the few bright spots in Michigan’s economy, creating more than 100,000 jobs in Michigan from 2005 to 2008, an 8-percent increase while jobs overall declined 5.4 percent during that period, according to a 2009 Michigan Green Jobs Report.

Examining need and alternatives when it comes to the state’s energy choices will also benefit public health and help protect Michigan’s unique natural resources.  Human health must be a factor when making energy decisions and take into account the fact that air and water pollution from coal plants causes health impacts such as: premature death, asthma, developmental disabilities, and cancer.  Our fishing and tourism industries have already been harmed by the mercury contamination in our rivers, lakes, and streams that make our fish unsafe to eat.  In addition, global climate change poses grave threats to our Great Lakes way of life, and we must take steps to minimize greenhouse gas pollution.

For reasons that are vital to the health of our residents, environment, and economy, we the undersigned urge you to uphold policies such as Executive Directive 2009-02 that examine need and alternatives to new sources of energy.  Now is the time for you to support Michigan businesses and much-needed local jobs by demonstrating your commitment to clean energy, new technology and a strong Michigan future.

We look forward to hearing from you at your earliest convenience.  You can contact us through Anne Woiwode, Michigan Director, Sierra Club, 517-974-2112,anne.woiwode@sierraclub.org or at Sierra Club, 109 E. Grand River Avenue, Lansing, MI 48906.
 
Sincerely,

Cyndi Roper
Clean Water Action

Samuel E. Flenner III
Environmental Integrity Project


Terry Miller
Lone Tree Council 
Michael Garfield
Ecology Center


Peter Sinclair
Midland Cares

December 13, 2010

NRDC Fact Sheet on the Consumers Energy Karn Weadock Coal Fired Plant


NRDC Fact Sheet on the Consumers Energy Karn Weadock Coal Fired Plant
"The Proposed Consumers Coal Plant: an Unnecessary Economic and Public Health Risk"

NRDC Fact Sheet on the Consumers Energy Karn Weadock Coal Fired Plant, "The Proposed Consumers Coal Plant: an Unnecessary Economic and Public Health Risk"