This piece was originally posted at The Rapidian on July 6th:
Today, Moms Clean Air Force Field Organizer, Starla McDermott, attended a press conference at Calder Plaza in downtown Grand Rapids. The press conference was organized by the Michigan Energy Michigan Jobs group to announce their success in obtaining enough needed signatures to get a Renewable Energy Standard onto this November’s ballot. Today over 530,000 signatures were delivered to the Secretary of the State in Lansing, MI. They only needed 322,000.
The Renewable Energy Standards, also known as RES, is a ballot initiative, and if passed, would require that 25% of our energy would come from renewable sources – such as wind, solar or even bio-mass – by the year 2025. This ballot proposal is organized by MI Energy Mi Jobs group and supported by many environmentalists, renewable energy manufacturers and labor unions. Grand Rapids Mayor, George Heartwell, spoke eloquently about why he fully supports Michigan having a 25% renewable energy goal by 2025. Rob Sisson, President of the Republican environmental group, ConservAmerica, also attended to demonstrate that this is a bi-partisan issue that is good for the environment and will create thousands of jobs.
Moms Clean Air Force loves 25% by 2025. It means that our Great Lakes will have less mercury pollution from coal-fired power plants. Mercury is a potent neurotoxin that harms the developing brains, hearts and lungs of fetuses, babies and toddlers. 25% by 2025 means lower asthma rates for all of us, and a lower risk of lung disease and heart attacks.
This November, Michigan moms and dads will have the chance to vote on the Renewable Energy initiative. Moms Clean Air Force believes that this proposal will strengthen Michigan’s economy and protect the health of our children and our environment.
Photo Credit: Azlan Ibrihim, Byrum & Fisk