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June Newsletter

Hi <<First Name>>,

Welcome to the very first Ann Arbor for Public Power monthly newsletter! If you haven’t heard from us in awhile, allow us to reintroduce ourselves: we are a group of Ann Arbor residents fighting for public power in the city of Ann Arbor. Our goals are to democratize, decommodify, decarbonize, and decolonize our energy systems, and we believe the best way to do that is to reject DTE’s dirty energy, overwhelming bills, and corporate greed and establish democratically-run energy for the people.

Why a newsletter? As the fight for climate and energy justice heats up across Michigan and all over the country, we want to keep you up-to-date on what’s happening. At the beginning of each month, we’ll be rounding up everything you need to know about energy and environmental justice in Michigan and beyond. We’ll cover everything from the latest developments in our own efforts to updates on DTE to fights for energy justice across the country.

Want to join the fight for energy justice and democracy in Ann Arbor? 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!

Photo of the Diag in downtown Ann Arbor in summertime

Local Campaign Updates

If you’ve been to an Ann Arbor Energy Commission meeting in the last few months, you may have run into us there (well, virtually, anyway.) Ann Arbor residents have been busy making their voices heard, as dozens have called into these meetings to voice their support for public power! We plan to continue these efforts and more as the summer continues.

In the News

Energy Justice and Housing are inextricably linked

Councilmember Elizabeth Nelson, the Graduate Employees Organization, and Central Student Government are working to extend Ann Arbor's Early Leasing Ordinance and increase renter protections. Ann Arbor ordinance 8:530 currently allows landlords to begin showing or leasing units as early as 70 days (less than 2.5 months) into the current lease. Join residents in calling on the Ann Arbor City Council to change City Ordinance 8:350 such that it prohibits landlords from showing or leasing units until 240 days have elapsed for a 1-year lease by signing this petition.

LittleSis Power Lines 101 Report

LittleSis, an organization that researches corporate greed, power, and corruption in cooperation with activists, just unveiled powerlines101.org, a website compiling research on investor-owned utilities including an overview of the Work For Me, DTE campaign by our neighbors in Detroit and research into DTE’s dirty practices. Among their findings: DTE has spent an average of over $3 billion on political lobbying in Michigan since 2015, and uses front groups and nonprofits that they fund in order to build political support for rate hikes and limits on distributed solar. All the more reason to fight for public power! Check out the website for more details and information on other public power campaigns across the country.

DTE and Consumers Announce Support for Raising, But Not Eliminating, Statewide Rooftop Solar Cap

Since 2016, the state of Michigan has imposed a 1% cap on how much solar investor-owned utilities can purchase from residents with rooftop solar. In May, DTE and Consumers Energy announced their support for raising this cap. However, they haven’t specified a number to raise it to, and they do not support eliminating it entirely. Distributed generation can be one tool for energy justice and decarbonization- we’ll be watching to see how this unfolds.

Pipeline Resistance Picks Up Steam

Communities across the Anishinaabek lands that we live on are escalating fights against dirty fossil fuel pipelines. In Michigan, notorious polluter Enbridge has flouted Governor Whitmer’s order to shut down Line 5, even after the Bay Mills Indian Community voted to banish the pipeline from their lands. Meanwhile, our neighbors in Minnesota are gathering to oppose Line 3, a dangerous tar sands pipeline being pursued by the very same Enbridge. An Indigenous-led movement of over 300 groups is calling for the revocation of Enbridge’s permit. 

We stand in solidarity with water protectors and defenders of treaty rights everywhere and join them in opposing these pipelines. Violations of Indigenous sovereignty are violations of climate and environmental justice- we need to keep fossil fuels in the ground, and public power can help us do that. The legal battle over Line 5 is likely to intensify, and we will keep you up-to-date on events and ways to support. The movement against Line 3 is calling for a Treaty People Gathering from June 5-8 to oppose the pipeline- visit the website to see how you can help.

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