Michigan Democrats are proposing a new sweeping bill, the Clean Energy Future Plan, which would require state-regulated utilities to be 100% carbon emission free by 2035. The goal for lawmakers is to stop burning coal by the year 2030 and have 100% clean energy by the year 2035.
After winning the majority in congress during midterm elections last year, Michigan Democrats are looking to address a key issue on their agenda, climate change.
“It is past due that we take action to address climate change and invest in the resources needed to make Michigan a leader in environmental resiliency and sustainability. Creating energy efficiency standards and working to reduce carbon emissions and utility costs for residents will make a significant economic impact,” said Sen. Sam Singh (D-East Lansing) in a press release Apr. 12.
Singh is one of the state senators sponsoring the Clean Energy Future plan. He serves the 28th District, which encapsulates Michigan State University, the city of East Lansing and parts of Lansing. He is the majority floor leader for the Democrats after being elected to his first term in the state senate during the last midterm elections.
“I think it’s great that Michigan is trying to be a leader in the fight against climate change,” said MSU junior Madeline Deal. “I’m not sure how they’re going to pull it off, but if the bill is successful I would be impressed and happy to live in a much cleaner environment.”
In addition to reducing fossil fuels for utility companies, Singh also looks to reduce the carbon intensity of transportation fuels by 25% by the end of 2035, as well as reduce emissions related to heating Michigan homes and businesses by 17% by 2030 by developing a Michigan Construction Decarbonization Strategic Plan. Finally the bill looks to reduce energy waste, by achieving at least 2% annual electric energy efficiency savings.
In the same press release, co-sponsor Sen. Sue Shink (D-Northfield Twp.) said, “The recommendations, which I am working with colleagues to make law, will make our homes and businesses more comfortable and reduce energy costs while improving the reliability of energy delivery. Everyone wins.”
“Adopting the Clean Energy Future Plan is just the next step forward in making Michigan a more environmentally sustainable state. Protecting the natural resources of our home and ensuring that Michiganders across the state can access the tools needed to decrease their carbon footprint will continue to be a top priority,” said Sen. Singh.