Since the ideal height of Michigan trees has been adequately covered by Mitt Romney, we tree huggers are moving on to a different topic.
Harken back to 2008 when opponents of Michigan's first renewable energy standard warned darkly that it would make our rates skyrocket and our electricity grid unreliable. We thought that was hysterical bullroar. And the latest report from the Michigan Public Service Commission confirms those suspicions.
The report was issued last week with the sexy title "Report on the Implementation of the P.A. 295 Renewable Energy Standard and the Cost-Effectiveness of the Energy Standards."
- The cost of wind energy in Michigan "continues to decline and is cheaper than new coal-fired generation."
- The cost of renewables, minus the savings from energy efficiency programs that also were part of the '08 laws, "comes in at less than 60 percent the cost of new coal."
- Progress toward the goal of 10 percent of the major utilities' electricity from renewable sources by 2015 is "on track" and "going smoothly."
- A benefit of wind energy "has been job creation." The report noted that an update to the Michigan Green Jobs Report is expected later this year. It will help quantify job numbers.
As we move closer to giving voters a chance to strengthen Michigan's renewable energy standard, we'll be hearing more about the success stories. We'll also hear from the usual naysayers about how it will never work. Now you know it's bullroar.