Wolverine loses its bite

LOWER Peninsula Michigan will be without a new coal-fired power plant after its owner, Wolverine Power Supply Cooperative, said this week that it would drop the plan altogether after seven years of development.

Donna Schmidt

The Michigan-based utility said that the 600MW Wolverine Clean Energy Venture, first proposed in 2006 for Rogers City and given environmental quality approval in 2011, was no longer on its radar.

Aside from its confirmation of “ending development”, no further details of the impetus were given.

However, the facility had been highly contested for years by environmental groups.

One such group to celebrate the decision was the Sierra Club, who marked the move as the 184th proposed US coal plant to see its demise since 2010.

“This is the right move for Michigan and for the cooperative members of Wolverine Power,” Sierra Club Michigan chapter director Anne Woiwode said.

“Wolverine’s decision reflects what’s really happening in Michigan today – that cleaner sources of reliable power are available at reasonable rates, and it’s growing quickly.”

Environmental Law & Policy Center attorney Andrew Armstrong said that his group will work with Wolverine to create a cleaner tomorrow.

“Michigan’s energy future should be driven by clean, renewable sources like wind and solar, and a strong commitment to energy efficiency,” he said.