The campaign to get voters to place renewable energy standards in the Michigan Constitution filed petition signatures Friday to get on the November ballot.
This campaign pits utility companies and their employee unions against energy entrepreneurs who see a business opportunity in amending Michigan’s constitution. The amendment would require energy providers to generate a quarter of the state’s electricity using wind, solar power or other renewable resources by 2025.
Liesl Clark is an energy consultant who supports the amendment. She says alternative energy should be part of Michigan’s manufacturing future. Clark also says the mandate would help stabilize and drive down electricity costs in Michigan.
“We don’t know what fuel is going to cost, but we do know that the wind and the sun are going to continue to be free,” she says.
Utilities say the amendment could force increases in business and residential energy bills if they can’t shop around for the least expensive type of fuel to generate power.