opinion: Advertisements from CARE misleading voters on Proposal 3
I for one, and simply sick and tired of the absurd, deceitful advertisement by Consumers Energy and Detroit Edison, operating in this case as the Clean Affordable Renewable Energy for Michigan Coalition, or CARE. They allege Proposal 3 will cost the state over $12 billion, costing the average household something in the neighborhood of $2600 apiece. Shame on Michigan’s utility companies for dumping upwards of $7 million on this disingenuous position.
First it bears noting that our own Public Service Commission in February stated that renewable energy was far less expensive than coal-based energy. Illinois credits its renewable energy standard as lowering electricity costs by $176 million per year.
Detroit Edison, Consumers and others spend hundreds of millions per year nursing along some of the oldest and dirtiest coal plants in the country. We also have a nuclear plant cited as one of country’s worst by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. Two new fossil fuel plants and a nuclear plant will easily cost as much or more than the $12 billion cited by CARE.
CARE also assumes in its calculations that all Michigan households, businesses and factories are the same. Households use a small fraction, on average, of the use of large corporate energy users. Any increase in utility prices would be borne mostly by the heaviest users of electricity, and not by households. But what CARE really misses the point on is forgetting that the very language of Proposal 3 guarantees it will not force electricity prices to rise by more than one percent per year.
These utilities, that have demanded and received double digit price hikes this year, occasioned by a 70 percent increase in coal prices since 2008, are doing a huge public disservice by disseminating information that is false and inflammatory. Please ignore CARE, and choose a cleaner and less expensive future for Michigan.
Robert M. Gordon