State Rep. Dave Prestin, of Cedar River, a member of the House Committee on Energy, Communications and Technology, today issued the following statement addressing serious concerns over the Democrats’ proposed energy plan for Michigan:
“This radical plan to go carbon-neutral in such a short span of time would be extremely dangerous and costly for the Upper Peninsula. I have shared our local concerns over this unrealistic agenda to my colleagues on a nearly daily basis. One recent report shows that the plan’s emphasis on electric vehicles and replacing our home appliances with electric alternatives could lead to a staggering 30% increase on our grid’s demands. That would stress an already shaky infrastructure and stretch wallets even thinner at a time when so many folks are already struggling to make ends meet.
“The study’s findings raise significant questions about the practicality and sustainability of the energy proposal. For instance, if we switched to 100% wind-related energy, we would need about 9,700 square miles of windfarms to meet that need – nearly equivalent to the total land area of Alger, Baraga, Dickinson and Marquette counties. This unrealistic proposal suffers from tunnel vision that doesn’t consider reliability, affordability, safety, and conservation. Instead of using best available technology, it doubles down on artificial timelines, government mandates, and an insincere effort to force bad policy.
“I’ve said this before, but it bears repeating – maintaining grid reliability and keeping energy costs low is what matters to the people who elected me to serve them in Lansing. Our state does not have the resources for the Democrats’ rushed plan. We must work together to reach a new, balanced approach instead of helping usher in this careless and unfeasible agenda that will only hamper U.P. residents.”
“A tunnel beneath the Straits of Mackinac is the optimal solution to safeguard the Great Lakes while ensuring vital energy products are continuously provided to residents in Upper and Lower Michigan, as well as communities nationwide,” wrote Prestin, R-Cedar River. “Propane plays an indispensable role in sustaining rural communities, which often lack the energy and sewer infrastructure present in more urbanized areas.”
“I voted no today because the speaker reneged on a promise he made last fall to pass bipartisan legislation in exchange for votes. The agreement happened, handshakes were made, and he has yet to fulfill his end of the bargain. The political games have to end. We are more than willing to work in a bipartisan fashion if Democrats end their blockade and agree to work collaboratively with us on the issues that matter most.”
“Seeing the bipartisan support behind our plan really emphasized the importance of backing EMTs and paramedics as they face critical staffing shortages across the board,” said Prestin, R-Cedar River. “Having served as a first responder for over a decade, I know the devasting impact that staffing shortages can have on medical first responders. Adequate medical resources are nearly non-existent around the state, especially in the Upper Peninsula. Our plan would begin addressing the issue by allowing EMTs and paramedics to continue training as they begin working and obtaining valuable on the job experience that will really benefit them as they work towards their full licensure.”