Throughout the month of February, MEECA has been meeting with returning and new legislators on the Senate and House energy committees. As the meetings and month progressed, MEECA members were made aware of a growing concern that could significantly negatively impact their business. Late in February we shared with our membership that the Michigan House Energy Policy Committee chairman was soon to drop a bill to repeal Michigan’s Energy Optimization (EO) programs. Yesterday, Aric Nesbitt (R) did just that. So, not wanting to work off rumor, we waited until the draft bill dropped to issue February’s Maven.
Earlier in the week Senator Mike Nofs (R), chairman of the Senate Energy & Technology Committee issued an outline for his vision of Michigan’s future energy policies which also included repeal of the EO programs. Additionally, just this week, Democrats from both chambers issued a press release supporting increasing the EO standard. Read more on these developments below.
MEECA is an advocate for Michigan’s energy efficiency industry — period. Our membership is made up of a cross section of business types and political persuasions. Following the direction of our board, MEECA espouses no particular political philosophy on the role of government. We have and will continue to work both sides of the aisle to see that Michigan has the most robust energy efficiency industry in the nation.
As successful business owners, our members overcome the challenges imposed by onerous government regulation everyday. However, they also know that when it comes to protecting the public interest regarding access to affordable energy supply, government’s role is critical.
The deal struck almost 100 years ago through Title II, entitles utilities to maintain a monopoly position in exchange for having virtually every aspect of their business be regulated; from being required to generate power all the way to the percent of net profit they get to earn. Earning a profit is a concept MEECA members fully understand. Earning a guaranteed profit by law is a good gig if you can get it.
The challenge before MEECA and its members for the next few months of energy debate is: How do we ensure utilities deploy the most cost effective resource available — that being energy efficiency — through what will continue to be a regulated industry?
One way is by increasing our Power In Numbers and having businesses who benefit from what have been proven to be the most cost effective energy resource join together to advocate for Michigan’s energy efficiency industry.
Join MEECA today as we advocate for an integrated energy efficiency market.