Rep. Hill on right course

To the Journal editor:

In his (recent) Letter to the Editor, (a correspondent) misses much more than Sara Cambensy

(The correspondent) and other critics of the recently adopted new energy policy in Michigan miss a great opportunity. We are heading into a new energy era and Michigan has just lapped its neighboring and competing states in lining up for big economic wins because of this new direction.

In creating new renewable targets we are taking our lives back in the Upper Peninsula. Republican legislators from the Upper Peninusla are crying that we are losing local control. In fact, we have been under the thumb of out-of-state energy corporations for decades and if they have their way, we will be paying them off for many more decades.

WE Energy in Milwaukee … and Enbridge Inc. out of Calgary, Alberta have been calling the tune and we simply pay it.

Townships and counties should be figuring ways to turn this new direction into ways to replace or amplify the low revenue PILT (payment in lieu of taxes) system endemic to the entire rural U.P. Good, new energy projects, well-regulated and thought out, will bring in much more money than empty federal and state acres.

The mines and paper mills and sawmills of the early U.P. created their own energy sources, usually dams and now we need to return to that energy independence. The eastern U.P. still gets more than half of its energy from a renewable hydro source planned and built a 100 years ago.

Leaders such as Invest U.P. and local banks and local chambers of commerce should be embracing the future. There are exciting new ideas, such as a massive energy storage project from Michigan Tech. Over the next 20 years of this new era we will be seeing more creative and local ideas. Don’t criticize it, welcome it. Or you will miss it.

Finally, (the correspondent) took aim at Rep. Hill for supporting this future. He also faults her for opposing Line 5, which the governor and attorney general did six years ago for violating the original pipeline easements.

Two weeks ago, a major independent study echoed two earlier studies and found that shutting down Line 5 will have no effect on Michigan. Rep. Cambensy knew that years ago yet she and others continue to enable the foreign corporation project.

Instead of boosting a threat to the U.P, and its residences and businesses, Rep. Hill wants to reduce our risk because the risk to us has no reward.


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