Michiganders Block Fossil Fuel-Backed Initiative from 2024 Ballot

Dark Money-funded Effort Faces Massive Defeat in Effort to Repeal Key Siting Provision in Gov. Whitmer’s Clean Energy Laws

Today, Michiganders blocked Citizens for Local Choice’s ballot initiative on siting from qualifying for the 2024 ballot, dealing a massive blow to the dark money and fossil fuel-funded effort to curtail Michigan’s growing clean energy economy. The initiative sought to repeal key renewable energy siting reforms from the
clean energy package passed and signed into law last year by Gov. Gretchen Whitmer. 

In response, Evergreen Action Midwest Senior Policy and Advocacy Manager Courtney Bourgoin released the following statement: 

“Michigan’s historic clean energy laws have positioned the state as a national leader in clean energy. Today, Michiganders protected the state’s clean energy leadership by rejecting a fossil fuel-funded scheme to repeal a core part of the clean energy plan before it was even implemented.

“This is a huge victory for clean energy progress in Michigan and a massive defeat for fossil fuel dark money interests attempting to misuse siting policy to derail clean energy progress. The implementation of last year’s clean energy package is essential for building clean energy projects, lowering energy costs, and addressing historical pollution and economic neglect. These renewable energy siting reforms will help Michigan meet Governor Whitmer’s climate goals while also multiplying the good-paying union jobs, energy savings, and tax revenue communities are already seeing across the state thanks to the clean energy economic boom.”

This failed effort is just one of a growing number of coordinated fossil fuel industry-backed attacks on state siting policies across the country. On Friday, Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz signed a major permitting bill into law to increase clean energy deployment, which passed the legislature despite a lobbying campaign from some fossil fuel interests. These clean energy policies are already delivering benefits directly to communities—and they’re pushing back against big oil and fossil fuel in their effort to boost corporate profits and further accelerate the climate crisis.