To the Journal editor:
Alger Delta Cooperative is committed to clean, affordable, renewable energy. Our commitment to clean and renewable energy is demonstrated every day when we, along with energy providers across the state, produce or purchase energy from renewable resources.
Alger Delta gets over 10 percent of its energy from renewable resources. Now, we're demonstrating our commitment to affordability by joining the CARE coalition (careformich.com) opposing Proposal 3, also known as "25 by 25."
Proposal 3 would amend the state constitution and require 25 percent of Michigan's electricity be generated from renewable resources by the year 2025. This proposal is dangerous, unachievable at a reasonable cost, and wrong for Michigan consumers.
Proposal 3 is dangerous. The constitution is not the place to set parking fines, entrance fees to state parks, or how much energy to generate from renewable resources, regardless of how laudable the goal.
Energy policy needs to be flexible so it can evolve and change with technology and economic conditions. Putting mandates in the state constitution will severely limit energy providers and tie the hands of elected representatives when new technologies and opportunities emerge.
Proposal 3 is unachievable at a reasonable cost. Proposal 3 would prohibit Upper Peninsula utilities from buying renewable energy from Wisconsin or other places where it is inexpensive and abundant.
Also, it forces utilities to purchase energy from all types of renewable generation, regardless of how high the cost. This will result in higher costs and these increased costs will be passed on to consumers in the form of higher rates.
Supporters argue that consumers won't see higher rates because Proposal 3 limits rate increases to 1 percent annually. Unfortunately, supporters seem unaware that utilities are required to charge rates based on the actual cost to serve.
This principle has been established in thousands of laws, rules and orders that have been passed, implemented or handed down over nearly one-hundred years of electric utilities providing service to Michigan consumers.
Overturning this principle with a constitutional amendment will lead to years of legal challenges, lawsuits and court cases, creating a great deal of unnecessary cost and uncertainty for energy rates for a long time in the future.
Proposal 3 is dangerous, unachievable at a reasonable cost, and wrong for Michigan consumers. Vote no on Proposal 3.
Tom Harrell, general manager
Alger Delta Cooperative