An Open Letter to Gov. Whitmer Regarding the MPSC

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
News from Multiple Organizations

June 13, 2019

Contact: Tim Minotas, tim.minotas@sierraclub.org, (248) 961-9610

An Open Letter to Gov. Whitmer Regarding the MPSC

Nearly two dozen groups sign letter urging Whitmer to appoint environmental champion to MPSC

MICHIGAN — The following is an open letter from the undersigned organizations to Gov. Gretchen Whitmer.

Dear Gov. Whitmer,

We, the undersigned organizations, urge you to use your authority to chart a new path forward for the Michigan Public Service Commission by appointing someone to the upcoming vacancy who will fight for ratepayers, recognize the dire need to move toward a cleaner energy future to combat climate change, and hold utilities accountable.

You have an amazing opportunity to greatly impact Michigan’s energy future by making an appointment based on the above-mentioned principles. You have already made great strides by reorganizing the Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy and partnering Michigan with the U.S. Climate Alliance. We ask you to continue your work on prioritizing environmental justice with the appointment to the MPSC.

The past appointment of Norm Saari to the MPSC by former Gov. Rick Snyder was a severe error in judgement. We should not be putting former utility lobbyists in charge of safeguarding consumers against their old bosses and shareholders. We cannot allow a fox to guard the hen house. We hope you will correct this mistake from the previous administration and choose someone with a strong environmental track record to replace Saari.

The MPSC is set to weigh in on crucial issues like the integrated resource plans for DTE, Consumers Energy, and other utility companies, which have spent millions to continue prioritizing polluting fossil fuels, stop distributed generation of clean energy, and unfairly raise prices on ratepayers. We need someone who will be a stalwart advocate for the working families and small businesses of Michigan by prioritizing environmental justice and equitable service rates, not someone who is more concerned about growing the profits of corporate utilities.

To end, we ask you to remember, as you pointed out in your State of the State address, the dire consequences of climate change faced by Michigan and our Great Lakes if we continue to drag our feet toward a renewable energy future. Generations to come are relying on you to do the right thing by ceasing our reliance on polluting fossil fuels and moving toward clean, renewable energy. We need the MPSC to be on board with that vision.

We thank you for what you’ve done for the state and hope you’ll consider our message when appointing the next person to the MPSC.

Sincerely,

Citizens’ Resistance at Fermi 2

Detroit Audobon

Ecology Center

Environmental Caucus of the Michigan Democratic Party

Flint Rising

Indivisible Fighting #9

MI/Welfare Rights Organization

Michigan Beyond Coal

Michigan Clean Water Action

Michigan Coalition for Human Rights

Michigan Environmental Justice Council

Michigan Interfaith Power & Light

Michigan Sierra Club

North End Woodward Community Coalition

Progress Michigan

Soulardarity

Southeast Michigan Jobs with Justice

Sunrise Movement Michigan

The 48217 Community and Environmental Health Organization

The Original United Citizens of Detroit

We the People Detroit

We the People – MI

We Want Green Too

Work for Me DTE

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