Renewable, clean energy is the goal that most states strive for, but should it be included in a state's constitution?
That's the question voters will answer at the polls on Nov. 6.
Michigan is among 29 states with renewable-energy policies already in place, according to the U.S. Department of Energy. Public Act 295, passed in October 2008, requires 10 percent of the state's energy to come from renewable sources by 2015.
If passed, Michigan would be the only state to put a standard in its constitution.
Opponents such as Consumers Energy and DTE say the move will cost too much money and that many smaller utilities may have trouble generating the 25 percent required to meet the new standard.
The proponents biggest argument is that the standard will create jobs in Michigan.
The following language for proposal 12-3 will appear on the Nov. 6 ballot:
This proposal would:
- Require electric utilities to provide at least 25 percent of their annual retail sales of electricity from renewable energy sources, which are wind, solar, biomass, and hydropower, by 2025
- Limit to not more than 1 percent per year electric utility rate increases charged to consumers only to achieve compliance with the renewable energy standard
- Allow annual extensions of the deadline to meet the 25 percent standard in order to prevent rate increases over the 1 percent limit
- Require the legislature to enact additional laws to encourage the use of Michigan made equipment and employment of Michigan residents
If you vote:
Yes – If voters vote "Yes," the Michigan Constitution would be amended to require 25 percent of the state's electricity to come from renewable energy sources by 2025.
No – If voters vote "No," Michigan utility companies would not be required to provide 25 percent of electricity sales from renewable energy sources by 2025.