MI Activists Wrap Cities in Clean Energy Petition
The Sierra Club coal activists in Michigan have been very busy in the past week, wrapping parts of seven different cities in a 350-foot petition covered with signatures of residents calling for clean energy. Last week the chapter and their coalition partners in Clean Energy Now made the news several times with their massive clean energy petition, including this Holland Sentinel article and this Grand Rapids Press article, and this piece from Midland Daily news.
There are at least eight coal-fired power plants proposed for Michigan, and chapter clean energy advocates say the state can do better. The 350-foot cloth petition was specifically asking Gov. Jennifer Granholm to regulate greenhouse gases from coal plants - and it included more than 2,000 signatures inside of footprints. The coalition also had many more signatures on paper petitions.
"This footprint petition was created back around Earth Day to bring in kids involvement…where they could sign their name within their footprint," said Jan O'Connell, the Energy Issues Legislative Organizer for the Michigan Chapter. "We also had online and paper petitions besides the footprint petition, where we gathered over 25,000 Michigan signatures."
O'Connell said they took the petition to a different city each day last week (Midland, Bay City, Macomb, Holland, Royal Oak, Grand Rapids, and Lansing) and held a press conference about coal and clean energy at each stop.
"We had between 4 – 5 speakers at each location highlighting how we and the petition are asking our Governor to require protections against dangerous carbon dioxide pollution before the state rushes to build more coal plants."
The coalition presented the petition to Gov. Granholm on Sept. 26 in Lansing.
The Michigan chapter and its allies are urging Granholm to fulfill her promise of requiring 25% of Michigan's electricity be generated by clean, renewable energy, instead of relying the dirty power sources of the past. Learn more about the movement on the Michigan chapter's website.
First two photos by Paul L. Newby II, Grand Rapids Press News; third photo by Brianna Scroggins, Midland Daily News