Bipartisan support for clean energy scored as ‘big win’ for Michiganders and environment
February 22, 2017, Ann Arbor, MI — The Michigan League of Conservation Voters released its 2015-2016 Legislative Scorecard today rating state lawmakers based on their committee and floor votes that impact Michigan’s natural resources.
The Scorecard serves as a non-partisan guide that Michigan citizens can use to hold their state lawmakers accountable for their positions on important land, water and air issues.
Michiganders and our environment scored some big wins in 2016 – including bipartisan clean energy legislation designed to reduce pollution in the air we breathe, lower our state’s carbon emissions and create good-paying clean energy jobs for the future,” said Lisa Wozniak, Michigan LCV Executive Director.
Traverse City-based Cherry Republic founder Bob Sutherland, who serves on the Michigan LCV Board, praised Republicans and Democrats for coming together in support of 2016 clean energy policy that increased Michigan’s renewable energy standard from 10 percent to 15 percent by 2021.
The quality of our state’s land, air and water are issues that impact all Michigan residents and businesses, regardless of political affiliation,” said Sutherland, whose company purchases 100 percent renewable energy credits or offsets to power its operations. “Recent advancements in renewable energy have resulted in lower costs and improved output, which means investing in clean, renewable energy has become an attractive and savvy strategy.”
In 2015-2016, Michigan LCV scored a total of 13 bills in both the House and Senate, including proposed legislation related to:
- Clean energy policy
- Water quality protections in the wake of the Flint water crisis
- Public land use
- Local government control over environmental policy
We don’t score lawmakers on Republican or Democratic issues. We score them on conservation issues that matter to all Michiganders,” said Wozniak. “Michigan LCV’s goal is to build a pro-conservation majority of state lawmakers from both parties dedicated to protecting the health of our communities and our natural resources. We’re proud to recognize members from both sides of the aisle who have worked hard on behalf of all people who live, work, do business and play in this beautiful state.”
Using the overall scores of Michigan legislators in the 2015-2016 session, Michigan LCV found that 41 percent of the state House and 31 percent of the state Senate is represented by pro-conservation lawmakers.
Both composite scores reflect a slight uptick from 2013-2014 when 36 percent of the state House and 29 percent of the Senate was ranked pro-conservation.
Despite this, Wozniak contends much was left undone at the close of 2016.
The Flint Water Crisis endangered thousands of innocent children. Enbridge’s aging Line 5 pipeline still lies without required safeguards beneath the Straits of Mackinac. And toxic algae blooms in Lake Erie continue to threaten the health of millions who rely on the lake for their drinking water,” she said. “These will be priority issues for Michigan LCV in 2017.”
Click here to view the full Michigan LCV 2015-2016 Legislative Scorecard.