Allegan County News & Union Enterprise News

Lake Allegan Association asks Governor to keep hydro dams

The Lake Allegan Association, Inc. submitted a letter to Governor Whitmer, calling for her to invest in hydroelectric power as part of her clean energy policy. LAA joins joins 379 signers—Michigan organizations, local government officials, businesses, and residents—in this effort. The letter calls on the governor to turn her clean-energy policy into practice by investing in hydroelectric power. 
“Our state ignoring river hydro is inconceivable at a time when both environmentalists and the hydro industry recommend ramping up hydropower’s role in a clean energy future. They agree that new technology means hydro dams can and should provide climate-ready, river-friendly power,” says Coco Soodek, LAA president. Yet, she says, the governor’s signature MI Healthy Climate Plan omits any mention of Michigan’s river hydroelectric power resources. 
The letter also responds to Consumers Energy’s August 9, 2022, announcement concerning possible removal of its 13 Michigan hydroelectric dams. It calls on Governor Whitmer to work with the company to protect the dams. Soodek points out that not only is dam removal contrary to Michigan’s ambitious clean-energy goals, but it would also remove recreational waters and related dollars that anchor local economies.
Lake Allegan Association, Inc. was formed in 2021 by Allegan-area residents devoted to the care, improvement, and conservation of Lake Allegan. With Consumers Energy’s announcement it is considering removing the dam that forms Lake Allegan, the organization’s nearly 400 members took on the task of preserving the lake’s very existence. Members have partnered with groups and individuals in other communities with at-risk hydro dams. Together, they are advocating for public policy that embraces and protects river hydroelectric dams as reliable and clean energy resources.

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