How the wind blows in Michigan

The state of wind power in Michigan by Great Lakes Echo

Michigan was one of the fastest growing states for wind power in 2012.  That’s according to the American Wind Energy Association’s annual market report. But the nuts and bolts of harnessing wind energy  is a complicated issue, with its fair share of supporters and detractors. Jim Dulzo of the Michigan Land Use Institute in Traverse City joined Current State to explain where the state stands in moving forward on wind power.

Clean energy would bring jobs, health and money, according to report

By Brian Bienkowski

Thousands of jobs, millions of dollars and a more stable climate are possible if Illinois aggressively pursues clean energy, according to a report released by the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS). The peer-reviewed report, dubbed “Bright Future for the Heartland,” predicts what would happen if Midwestern states reached two goals: produced 30 percent of its electricity supply from renewables by 2030; and reduced power consumption 2 percent every year starting in 2015. The goals came from policy recommendations that were given to Midwestern state governors in 2009 by an advisory board.(“Energy Roadmap”)

In 2007, Illinois mandated that 25 percent of the state’s power supply be renewable by 2025, and power consumption must drop 2 percent annually.  While a step in the right direction, the report claims the Prairie State stands to gain more by shooting for the Energy Roadmap targets. By 2030, Illinois would add 8,400 jobs, lower energy bills by $4.7 billion and see $4.5 billion in new capital investment with stricter clean energy policies, according to the report. The jobs would come from renewable energy manufacturing, installation, and maintenance – the kind of labor base abundant in Illinois.

New state bonds proposed to boost energy efficiency

Some lawmakers want Michigan to be able to issue bonds to help homeowners pay for energy efficiency measures such as renewable energy systems, storm windows, automated energy controls and new heating and air conditioning units. The proposal is designed to create jobs and stimulate the economy.