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July Newsletter

Welcome to Ann Arbor for Public Power’s July Newsletter! The past month has been an alarming one as we’ve seen floods in Detroit, heatwaves across the North American West, and a pipeline rupture in the Gulf of Mexico. As we see the horrifying effects of climate change and dirty energy materializing across the US and abroad, we affirm our commitment to fight for public power in Ann Arbor in pursuit of a just, clean, democratized energy system that protects the most vulnerable among us. Read on for updates on energy and climate news, new developments in our campaign, and ways you can get involved. We have a world to win!

Local Campaign Updates

Request for a Feasibility Study

We are excited to present a resolution to the energy commission asking them to recommend that the city council fund a feasibility study into municipalization. This study will answer important questions such as what purchasing DTE’s assets would cost, what the expected revenue of a municipal utility would be, and generally will help inform us on what the process of creating a publicly owned energy utility will look like. 

Join us July 13th at 6pm on CTN.

Canvassing

Please join us for our first canvas on July 18th! All experience levels are welcome. We will be meeting at Burns Park, where we will be providing a brief training on how to canvas and what our talking points are before heading out and knocking on doors. 

Additional details can be found on our Facebook page.

Nonprofit Status

As of June 29th, Ann Arbor for Public Power is officially a Nonprofit Organization. This gives us more power to do things like raise funds and hire lawyers. Be on the lookout for additional information in the coming weeks about how you can donate to support the campaign!

Join the Fight

Ann Arbor for Public Power has organizing meetings every Thursday evening, and we would love to see you there! Our meetings are remote until we’re sure they’ll be COVID-safe. To join, send an email to annarborpublicpower@gmail.com with "Organizing Meetings" in the subject line and we'll send you the meeting information!

In the News

Pipeline Battles Continue Across the Midwest

As fossil fuel companies continue to build pipelines with no regard for environmental concerns or Indigenous land rights, courageous water protectors and land defenders are fighting back. Resistance to Enbridge’s Line 3 pipeline in Minnesota continues as water protectors chained themselves to construction vehicles last week. These peaceful protesters face severe criminalization and repression, as some have been charged with felonies. Follow this link to learn how to support protestors on the front lines. Meanwhile, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is requiring Enbridge to conduct an environmental impact statement for their Line 5 pipeline project, which has met enormous resistance from Indigenous tribes and environmental groups. This is a positive development that is likely to delay the operation of the pipeline. We stand in solidarity with all water protectors, land defenders, and advocates of Indigenous sovereignty and environmental justice.

Where’s the “Community” in Community Solar?

Community solar proposals highlight how the issue of ownership is key in the transition towards renewables. If communities are going to publicly fund the transition away from fossil fuels, shouldn’t they retain ownership of what they build? Our friends over at Soulardarity in Highland Park raised this issue in their refusal to sign on to a “community solar” settlement with DTE, arguing that DTE should be paying the price of the transition if they are going to retain ownership of the solar generators and continue to collect the revenue from the power they generate. We agree, and salute Soulardarity’s work fighting for energy justice in Highland Park.

Flooding in Detroit: Climate Change and Infrastructure

Metro Detroit has experienced severe flooding due to heavy rains in recent weeks. The floods left thousands of people with damaged homes, vehicles, and left over 16,000 DTE customers temporarily without power. Apartment buildings in Ypsilanti also sustained severe damage, displacing many families. These floods are a sobering demonstration of the importance of infrastructure investment and the scourge of systemic racism in an era of increasing extreme weather events driven by climate change. Working-class communities of color across Southeast Michigan have been historically underinvested and exploited by government and corporate actors. We must stand with Detroit, Ypsilanti, and all communities facing underinvestment to demand that everyone has resilient, high-quality infrastructure which protects them in these situations. We believe public power can be one part of this equation. You can access or donate to Metro Detroit mutual aid organizations and find state aid for flooding through this document put together by We the People MI.

Have questions, concerns, or just want to say hi? Reach out to A2P2 at annarborpublicpower@gmail.com!
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