Get the facts: Clean Energy is a Win For Michigan
Clean, renewable energy has emerged as a game-changer when it comes to powering our homes and businesses reliably and affordably. Importantly, it also reduces dangerous carbon pollution in our air and water that contributes to the growing climate crisis. The clean energy evolution presents enormous opportunities to create good jobs, lower energy costs and reduce pollution in our air and water – now and well into the future.
Clean Energy is a Job Creator
Thanks to the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) passed last year, Michigan has the opportunity to take advantage of historic federal funding to bolster state investments in clean, renewable energy.
- A recent Climate Power report shows Michigan is already leading the country in clean energy job growth since the IRA’s passage last year, with $21 billion invested in 24 clean energy projects that have created 15,856 clean energy jobs across the state.
- By passing 100% clean energy legislation, we can create more than 160,000 good-paying jobs over the next decade, from manufacturing and construction to research and development, per a recent report by Michigan-based 5 Lakes Energy.
- That same report found passing 100% clean energy can secure $7.8 billion more in investment by 2050, more than double what Michigan would receive without enacting these policies.
Clean Energy Can Make Our Energy More Affordable and Reliable
Clean energy is cheaper than ever, and the cost keeps going down. Year after year, studies have shown that clean energy is cheaper than fossil fuels like coal and natural gas, even without subsidies.
- An April report from Lazard, a leading financial advisory and asset management firm, found costs for clean, renewable energy, like wind and solar, continue to be cheaper than coal plants and natural gas, even without government subsidies.
- Michiganders are upset with poor electric utility reliability and clean energy expansion is popular among Michigan voters. Per a poll from Evergreen Action, 65 percent of Michigan voters support a transition to 100% clean energy across the state’s energy grid, and 73 percent support clean energy investments that will keep energy prices affordable and improve reliability.
- According to the latest “Utility Performance Report” by the Citizens Utility Board of Michigan, Michigan residents have the highest energy costs in the Midwest with some of the worst reliability in the country in terms of both power outage frequency and duration. The status quo isn’t working.
- Passing clean energy legislation will lower household energy costs by at least $145 a year, according to a recent study by Five Lake Energy. By investing in clean energy infrastructure, including battery and energy storage to help meet energy demands, we can make energy more affordable and reliable for Michigan families.
Protecting our Health and Future
Michigan is not immune to the devastating impacts of climate change, from extreme weather events to rising temperatures and, most recently, unbreathable air from wildfire smoke. Moreover, many of our large fossil fuel power plants are located in and around communities of color, who have to grapple with poor air quality on a daily basis. Without action, climate impacts will continue to worsen, threatening the health and wellbeing of Michigan communities.
- The 48217 zip code in Southwest Detroit has the most air pollution of any community in the state, which can have devastating impacts on our health. Residents in the 48217 zip code – a community that is majority Black and Latino residents – experience disproportionately high rates of cancer and asthma. Investing in 100% clean energy will significantly reduce our carbon emissions and protect the health of communities across the state.
- This summer, wildfire smoke from Canada prompted air quality alerts and had severe impacts on the health of elderly and immunocompromised Michiganders. By reducing our carbon emissions via clean energy legislation, we protect the health of Michiganders and improve the quality of the air we breathe.
- According to a report by 5 Lakes Energy, by passing 100% clean energy legislation, Michigan can avoid nearly 1,000 premature deaths and save $8.3 billion in public health costs by 2050.
We have an opportunity to create jobs, improve public health, and take meaningful action against the climate crisis. Clean energy is clearly a winner for Michigan. It’s time to pass 100% clean energy legislation for the sake of our economy, our communities, and our planet.