June 18, 2019
Governor Gretchen Whitmer on June 8, signed Executive Order 2019-14, creating the Upper Peninsula (U.P.) Energy Task Force as an advisory body within the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE).
The U.P. currently faces some of the highest electricity rates in the nation. About 25% of U.P. residents heat their homes with propane, much of it delivered through a single pipeline. This makes many Michigan families north of the Mackinac Bridge vulnerable to fuel supply disruptions.
"Governor Whitmer is committed to ensuring the U.P. is served by reliable and affordable energy," said EGLE Director Liesl Clark. "Our department will lead a collaborative process to engage U.P. residents and businesses in charting an energy future that supports economic prosperity and protects Michigan's environment and public health."
The 13-member U.P. Energy Task Force will assess overall energy needs and how they are currently being met; evaluate potential changes in energy supply and distribution; and develop forward-looking energy solutions for the U.P. It is charged with submitting two reports to Governor Whitmer: a propane plan by March 31, 2020 and a more comprehensive report by March 31, 2021.
While in the U.P. last week for EGLE’s Northern Michigan Environmental Compliance Conference, Director Clark filmed introductory remarks that were aired at the U.P. Energy Summit in Marquette on June 14. Those remarks include more information on the U.P. Energy Task Force.