LANSING, MI – Advanced energy industry groups, including the Michigan Energy Innovation Business Council (Michigan EIBC), Clean Grid Alliance (CGA), American Clean Power Association (ACP), Advanced Energy United (United), and the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) today applauded the House passage of legislation to streamline and improve the siting of wind, solar, and energy storage projects (House Bills 5120-5123) as well as bills to set a 100% carbon-free energy standard by 2040, enact an energy storage requirement, increase energy waste reduction, and improve customer access to rooftop (Senate Bills 271, 273, and 502). The trade organizations, which collectively represent hundreds of businesses in the clean power industry, urged the legislature to continue to move these legislative packages to the Governor’s desk for signature.
In order for Michigan to achieve our expanded clean energy goals, House Bills 5120-5123 establish a common sense process that balances local government involvement with the expertise at the Michigan Public Service Commission to make decisions regarding large utility-scale wind, solar, and energy storage projects. The bills also ensure that the benefits from projects flow to local communities, construction workers will be paid prevailing wages, and environmental protections will be upheld. This legislation will allow farmers with farmland that has been in their family for generations to keep that land and gain a new source of income. Combined with Senate Bills 271, 273, and 502, which expand renewable energy, energy storage, energy efficiency, and access to rooftop solar, this legislation will create jobs and economic opportunity across Michigan.
“The clean energy industry employs nearly 124,000 Michiganders – which is more than in any other state in the Midwest,” said Dr. Laura Sherman, President of Michigan EIBC. “Michigan EIBC applauds the House passage of this legislation, which will support our growing advanced energy workforce and communities across Michigan.”
“These legislative packages offer solutions to some of the most pressing issues facing the energy transition,” said Trish Demeter, Managing Director with Advanced Energy United. “With a 100% clean energy goal, and reduced barriers to building wind, solar and energy storage projects, Michigan affirms its place as a leader in the clean energy economy.”
“I congratulate the House of Representatives for displaying strong leadership on climate and clean energy by passing this package of bills,” said Peder Mewis, Regional Policy Director with CGA. “Reforming the siting and permitting process will offer a clear path forward for renewable energy development and ensure Michigan can achieve a carbon free future.”
“The leadership shown by the Michigan House of Representatives on these critical issues can serve as a model for lawmakers in other states as they seek to deliver the valuable new jobs, tax revenue and investment that clean energy can bring,” said Erika Kowall, Director of Midwest State Affairs with the American Clean Power Association (ACP).
“This legislation marks a historic step forward for Michigan’s clean energy economy,” said Markus Pitchford, central regional director for the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA). “The package will bring billions of dollars of investments and thousands of new jobs to the state — from project development and installation to manufacturing. It features provisions to support solar and storage projects of all sizes, including a significant boost to net metering caps for rooftop solar and siting and permitting reforms that are critical for large-scale solar and storage development. The solar and storage industry looks forward to working with the Whitmer administration, as well as state and local agencies, to implement this monumental law.”