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City Board of Light and Power opposes Prop 3

Guest op-eds

October 21, 2012
Edward Angeli , The Mining Journal

The Marquette Board of Light and Power at its Oct. 9 meeting adopted a resolution opposing Proposition 3, which would require power utilities to derive 25 percent of their energy needs from renewable resources by 2025.

The Marquette Board of Light and Power does not believe that enacting a Michigan Constitutional Amendment forcing the use of renewable resources, without first making a determination of its technical and economical feasibility, makes good public power sense.

How many wind turbines, solar panels, dams, or bio-mass plants would it take? Can you recoup the expenses that are associated with these projects? Can the utilities pass the cost of producing power from these resources on to the consumer? There does not seem to be a clear answer in Proposition 3.

The Marquette Board of Light and Power believes that you are being bombarded by biased opinions, both for and against the proposition.

The state of Michigan has an unbiased group, The Michigan Public Service Commission, who is charged with ensuring the reliability and affordability of our electric rates.

Through this commission, the answers should come. After we have had the opportunity to study, test and debate the merits of all these resources, and any new ones that come up in the future, all interested parties should have a say in the outcome.

Fact Box

BLP resolution approved Oct. 9

WHEREAS, Michigan's 2008 energy law PA 295 was approved after careful evaluation of its impact on energy bills, the electricity needs of Michigan families and businesses, how renewable energy fits in with the state's generating fleet, and the price of power on the wholesale markets; and

WHEREAS, MBLP supports and is making excellent progress toward reaching the current standard of 10 percent renewable energy by 2015; and

WHEREAS, any consideration of raising the state's renewable energy standard should wait until after 2015, when the 10 percent standard can be evaluated on a number of key factors; and

WHEREAS, the constitution is a foundational document, meant to establish basic rights for the long term. It is not the place for energy policy, which should be determined by the legislature.

BE IT RESOLVED by the MBLP, with unanimous consent, that the Board opposes the proposed 25 X 2025 Constitutional Amendment and supports the legislative policy making process.

ADOPTED this 9th day of October 2012

Michigan Power Utilities are presently working under Public Act 295, which requires that 10 percent of the states energy needs come from renewable resources by 2015. Common sense tells us that we should see how this act works, what adjustments would be needed or changes made, before we add an amendment to the Michigan constitution.

The Marquette Board of Light and Power is committed to producing the cleanest, most reliable and cost effective power available for its consumers. We have done extensive testing and research into bio-mass while partnering with state agencies to see if wind power is feasible. Most recently, we replaced one of our hydro plants, the Tourist Park Dam.

For the above reasons, please consider voting no on Proposal 3.

Editor's note: Edward Angeli is chairman of the Marquette Board of Light and Power.



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