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Oryana Supports Michigan Ballot Proposal 3

October 9, 2012, 10:20 am

We might be waiting in long lines at polling places on November 6 since the ballot will be crowded with items including 6 proposals to amend the Michigan constitution. Proposal 3 is an opportunity to steer Michigan more aggressively toward clean energy production and away from dirty, polluting sources of energy. Thirty-one other states already have adopted renewable energy standards similar to Michigan’s proposal without significant increases in utility costs for consumers.

Proposal 3 aims to amend the state constitution to establish a standard for renewable energy.  This proposal would require electric utilities to provide at least 25% of their annual retail sales of electricity from renewable energy sources, which are wind, solar, biomass and hydropower, by 2025. The bulk would most likely come from wind.

Opponents say that the proposal will force utility users to cough up thousands of extra dollars to pay for it, even though written into it is the stipulation that not more than 1% per year electric utility rate increases will be charged to consumers, amounting to about 50¢ per month on average. It also stipulates that annual extensions of the deadline to meet the 25% standard in order to prevent rate increases over the 1% limit will be allowed.

Who is for Prop 3?

Environmental groups and conservation groups like the Sierra Club, the National Wildlife Federation and the Michigan Environmental Council, businesses linked to the wind and solar power industry such as Danotek Motion Technologies and Dokka Fasteners.

Who’s against Prop 3?

Major utilities, such as DTE and Consumers Energy, and smaller co-ops, Gov. Rick Snyder, chambers of commerce and other organizations that support business like the Small Business Association of Michigan, and local chapters of labor unions, including Iron Workers and the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers.

What are the pros?

Backers say it would shift Michigan further away from fossil fuels that damage the environment, decrease the state’s reliance on outside sources for power, and create jobs by fostering the growth of new investment in renewable energy sources.

What are the cons?

Opponents say the proposal would raise costs for consumers, lock the state in to a wind-only approach that bets on an unreliable source of energy, and cost Michigan more jobs than it would create.

Oryana, in keeping with our Ends policies, which include environmental stewardship and social responsibility, supports this proposal.

Posted by at 10:20 am
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