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MEC reminds anti-clean energy stuntmasters from CARE: Watch out for power plant mercury!

Nov 2, 2012
The Michigan Environmental Council (MEC) today reminded the utility-backed anti-renewable energy CARE Coalition to be careful if they eat Great Lakes fish during their Proposal 3 lakeshore publicity stunts.

“We think it’s reprehensible that the anti-renewable energy crowd is lying about the location of Michigan’s future clean energy wind turbines in an attempt to maintain their coal monopoly,” said James Clift of MEC.

“But we do not wish mercury poisoning on anyone. And CARE’s hired guns should be reminded that there are dangerous levels of the neurotoxin in fish from the Great Lakes and Michigan’s inland waters that come from the coal-fired power plants they favor over the wind energy they vilify.”

MEC suggests that coalition members consult the Michigan Fishing Guide, which urges women and children to eat no more than one meal of fish per month from many Michigan waters due to mercury poisoning. Mercury is a dangerous neurotoxin that can have permanent and devastating effects – especially for fetuses and young children.

Power plants are the largest source, emitting around 33 tons of mercury pollution in the US annually and contributing to almost half of all mercury emissions. Proposal 3 would help reduce mercury poisoning from coal power plants by using more clean energy generation.

Proposal 3 proponents advocate placement of renewable assets like wind turbines in areas appropriate for them – based on considerations including natural resource impacts, aesthetic concerns and community sentiment.

“Less than 3 percent of Michigan’s total land area is necessary to meet Proposal 3’s clean energy standard, and that includes the spacing between turbines that is available for other uses,” said Clift. “So there is no need to put them where communities don’t welcome them. CARE’s fear mongering sideshow is good theater, but completely baseless.”
Hugh McDiarmid Jr., 248-660-4300
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