Pages tagged "Energy Equity"
Whether from advocates, lawmakers or industry leaders, the message was the same at Tuesday evening's town hall: pointless restrictions on who can use solar energy must end.
Panelists of the event hosted by the Michigan Environmental Council and Michigan United each encouraged the passage of House Bill 4236. The bill, sponsored by 10 Republicans and three Democrats, would lift the cap on distributed generation. This would allow anyone to generate energy, like solar, on their business or property and get credit for any excess energy they send back to the grid.Read more
A bipartisan deal would lead to less flooding, cleaner drinking water, better state parks and affordable, energy efficient homes.
The supplemental budget deal, which passed out of the House Appropriations committee late Wednesday night, would invest over $2.5 billion into environmental projects. Much of the money stems from extra state and federal COVID dollars.
The supplemental reflects the environmental priorities of Gov. Whitmer, who previously proposed $2.2 billion in environmental initiatives. The final deal builds off of two proposals put forward by Appropriations Committee Vice Chair Sen. Jon Bumstead, which provided $4.3 billion in water and parks funding.Read more
The $70 billion state budget, signed by Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on Wednesday, includes funding that will make homes safer and healthier for Michiganders.
Residents will soon have better opportunities to get lead out of their homes, regulate household temperature and keep PFAS and other chemicals out of their faucets.
“The Michigan Environmental Council would like to thank lawmakers and Gov. Whitmer for prioritizing residents' health,” said Tina Reynolds, program director for environmental health at the Michigan Environmental Council. “We spend more than 80% of our time indoors. The safety of our homes is a critical part of a healthy environment.”Read more
At the start of the summer Consumers Energy rolled out new summer peak rates for all residential customers, one which the Michigan Environmental Council and others have long advocated for as they intervened in utility companies' rate and energy decisions. MEC wrote about those rates and why they are good for the environment and our wallets.
These rates, called time-of-use rates, price energy usage a little higher when electricity consumption is at a peak and a little lower when it's not. Doing so reduces peak energy use, keeps dirty, old fossil fuel plants offline, and saves customers money.
Since then, MEC has gotten a new analysis from Douglas Jester at 5 Lakes Energy that shows the rates are a critical step towards ensuring energy is more affordable for low-income customers. (See pages 45 to 60 here.)Read more
In an effort to advocate for Michigan customers, four groups announced today they are joining Attorney General Dana Nessel to intervene in Consumers Energy’s proposal to raise electric rates in Michigan.
The groups intervening are the Michigan Environmental Council, Citizens Utility Board of Michigan, Sierra Club and Natural Resources Defense Council.
In December 2020, the Commission approved a $90.2 million rate increase, which went into effect January 1 of this year. The utility company originally asked for an increase of $254 million during that case, but MEC and allies were able to blunt it.
If the Michigan Public Service Commission (MPSC) approves Consumers Energy’s $225 million rate increase request, residential customers would see an additional 8.3% rate increase while industrial customers would see a 4.2% increase and commercial customers would see a bump of 0.4%.Read more
Environmental groups endorsed a bill last Wednesday that would eliminate the cap on how many residents and businesses can use small-scale solar energy to power their homes and companies, saying current law restricts job growth and investment and access to affordable energy.
The Michigan League of Conservation Voters and Michigan Environmental Council testified in support of Rep. Markkenen's House Bill 4236 during the House Energy Committee Wednesday. The Republican from Hancock has the bipartisan support of 12 cosponsors.
Michigan’s people, places and economy are en route to being healthier and more resilient thanks in part to the Wednesday appointments of environmental champions to the state’s new Council on Climate Solutions.
The citizen-led group will formulate Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s MI Healthy Climate Plan and ensure it is justly implemented. The Plan will help Michigan fight off the worst of climate change by guiding it toward carbon neutrality by 2050.
Among the Council’s appointees was Charlotte Jameson, program director for legislative affairs, drinking water and energy for the Michigan Environmental Council. She will serve as the Council’s co-chair of the buildings and housing workgroup.Read more
On Tuesday, Jan. 19, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer released the Michigan COVID Recovery Plan. Included was a commitment to a clean energy jobs training program. Michigan Environmental Council President/CEO Conan Smith issued the following statement in response:
“Gov. Whitmer’s commitment to train Michiganders for clean energy jobs is just what we need during a pandemic that has left many people unemployed, many others underemployed and an economy struggling. What’s more, Gov. Whitmer’s decision was grounded in environmental justice. The training program will provide good, secure jobs to those that have long been systematically gatekept from them, and it is in tandem with her commitment to statewide carbon neutrality by 2050. Both results will make Michigan and its residents healthier and more resilient.”Read more
The fog of anxiety was thick for many as we trudged through an exhausting election and an ever-present pandemic. Yet, bright lights cut through.
Laws, decisions and amendments passed at 2020’s end will make the health of Michigan’s people, places and finances stronger in 2021 and beyond.
Check out the wins from late 2020 that MEC helped secure. Let’s ring the bells once more!Read more
The 1.6 million residential customers of Consumers Energy will see their electricity rates go up 11.93% in January as Michigan continues to grapple with a pandemic and a recession. But it could have been worse.
The Michigan Public Service Commission approved a $100 million rate increase Thursday that will go into effect Jan. 1. An average residential customer can expect to pay $9.17 more a month.Read more