Bill Latka

  • published Federal Climate Action in Campaigns 2022-01-14 13:43:28 -0500

    Shut Down Line 5 - No Tunnel

    With a slim pro-climate majority in Congress and a climate champion in the White House, we have a unique opportunity to pass federal policy to address the climate crisis in this critical decade.

    Over the past year, we have worked hard with partners across the state to make sure Michigan’s Congressional Delegation does everything they can to pass into law the historic climate justice policies in the Build Back Better Act. This policy would invest billions of dollars in wind, solar and efficiency to move us toward 100% renewable energy; create a Civilian Climate Corps to put people to work in good paying jobs; invest billions in electric vehicle charging stations and EV rebates; modernize the electrical grid; and make major investments in environmental justice communities. 

    We helped organized events with Representatives Rashida Tlaib, Andy Levin, Debbie Dingell, and at the office of Representative Elissa Slotikin. We met with the staff of Senators Stabenow and Peters. We organized hundreds of calls and emails into their offices.

    In late November, the House passed BBBA, with historic funding for climate solutions intact (to the tune of $555 billion). On December 19, Sen. Joe Manchin declared that he would not vote for the package. Since the Senate Democrats need every single vote for this to pass, this was a major blow. We are now hearing that BBBA negotiations have started back up, and that climate is a top priority for a majority in Congress. We expect that we will get a chance to pass some version of the Build Back Better Act or other climate policy before the summer, but it will likely be smaller and with edits and cuts.

    Fossil fuel interests are still doing everything they can to try to stop the bill and are pressuring the Senate to water down this language and climate provisions. These special interests have succeeded in delaying action on climate change for decades. We cannot let them succeed in watering down these bills.

    Sign up for our email list so we can keep you updated, and share opportunities to take action. 

    Call your Senators Today

    Here's what to do:

    1. Call the offices of both of your U.S. Senators.

    You can reach Sen. Debbie Stabenow's DC office at (202) 224-4822 or look up your local office here.

    You can reach Sen. Gary Peters DC office at (202) 224-6221, or look up your local office here.

    When you reach their office, ask to talk to their policy staff that work on climate change. If you aren't able to speak with them, leave a message.

    Below are our suggested talking points to say once you are connected. 

    "Hi, my name is _____. I’m a constituent of yours and I care deeply about climate change. I am calling to urge you to do everything in your power as my Senator pass the Build Back Better Act with full funding for all climate programs. Michigan is already experiencing the impacts of climate change, like the severe storms and flooding that impacted thousands of people this summer. Climate scientists have made clear with the latest IPCC report that we only have a narrow window to stabilize the climate, and to do so we must pass the climate investments in this budget proposal!

    Thank you for using your voice during this crucial window for federal climate justice action!



  • published Support Cities 100% Policies in Campaigns 2022-01-14 13:57:42 -0500

    Support Cities 100% Policies

    Long before we started to see state and federal action on climate, cities have been leading the way in climate action, both here in Michigan and around the world.

    Today more than 200 communities in the U.S. have set 100 percent renewable goals for electricity, and over 50 are already powered entirely by clean and renewable sources of electricity. 

    We continue to need ambitious local action if we are going to achieve the 50% cuts in emissions by 2030 necessary for a stable climate.

    Now many cities in Michigan are working to reach 100% renewable for all energy sources - electricity, buildings, transportation, and more. 

    MiCAN will soon be releasing a list of Michigan cities, towns and counties with bold climate goals. And case studies to show how communities across the state are overcoming their unique challenges to reduce GHG emissions, and how they are doing so equitably.

    Join our list to be the first to know when the report is released, and to get other updates.

    In addition to being necessary to avoid climate catastrophe, there are many reasons people are getting behind 100% renewable energy for all sources and for all people. 

    100% is Achievable & Cost Effective 
    Research shows 100% renewable energy is achievable for the entire U.S. right now, and will just become easier as storage and other technologies improve. More than 200 U.S. cities and counties have committed to 100%, and over 100 cities around the globe get at least 70% of their energy from renewable sources.2 Renewables and efficiency now cost less than any other energy source in Michigan,3 and are expanding rapidly, with large solar arrays now being built in Cadillac, Grand Rapids, East Lansing and other parts of the state.

    100% for Healthy Communities 
    Powering our state with 100% renewable energy for all our energy needs would save Michigan families over $150 in energy costs and $2,000 in health care costs every year, according to Stanford University research.4 It would reduce the air pollution that triggers asthma attacks and respiratory illnesses, improving quality of life and saving lives. Done right, a Michigan 100% policy that centers equitable solutions will help repair the unjust legacy of environmental harms inflicted on communities by fossil fuel and other industrial polluters.

    100% for Good Jobs & Strong Economies 
    A commitment to 100% RE will help keep Michigan's manufacturing industry strong, and must be done in a way that creates good-paying jobs in the rapidly growing renewable energy economy. Michigan already leads the Midwest with over 126,000 renewable energy jobs.5 Smart renewable energy policies will help this continue to grow,6 and should include investments in workers and communities affected by closing fossil fuel plants and the communities.7

    Renewable energy investments can boost local economies in Michigan communities. Wind energy has led to millions of dollars for rural landowners in some rural Michigan counties,8 and over $32 million of investment in our state and local economies through taxes alone in 2018.9

    100% RE is good for communities and is good for Michigan!


    [1] Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change IPCC 1.5C Report:

    [2] CDP Data:

    [3] Michigan Public Service Commission:,4639,7-159-16400_17280-376729--,00.html

    [4] Stanford University 100% Energy Roadmap for Michigan:

    [5] Clean Jobs Midwest Report 2019:

    [6] ELPC 2019 Report - Michigan Clean Energy Business Supply Chain:

    [7] BlueGreen Alliance Plan Solidarity for Climate Action:

    [8] Midwest Energy News, "Report: Rural Michigan landowners net millions from wind farms," April 12, 2016.

    [9] AWEA 2018 U.S. Wind Industry Annual Market Report:

  • published Michigan Climate Award Winners in 2021 Summit 2021-05-27 12:35:05 -0400

    Michigan Climate Award Winners

    We are thrilled to announce the winners of the inaugural Michigan Climate Awards!

    High Five's!The Michigan Climate Action Network is recognizing Michiganders doing exceptional climate and justice work with these new awards. We asked for your help to recognize some of the dedicated professionals, activists, and young people doing the hard work of moving Michigan toward a just and sustainable future. 

    Recipients were honored at our virtual Michigan Climate and Clean Energy Summit, May 24-27, 2021.

    Here are this year's incredible winners.



    The Climate Champion Award goes to a professional working for an organization, a municipality, or business in Michigan

    The recipient of this award is Dr. Denise Keele, a founding member and director of both Western Michigan University's Climate Change Working Group and the Kalamazoo Climate Crisis Coalition (KCCC).  Dr. Keele has focused her teaching, scholarship, and professional service to educating students and helping other faculty learn about the climate crisis. She has inspired countless students to pursue careers related to climate change. 

    As one person who nominated her wrote, “Dr. Keele devotes her professional life to championing the cause of addressing the climate crisis.  She does so in a way that profoundly models inclusion, collaboration, education, and political transformation.” AND “Denise’s infectious energy and enthusiasm have motivated many hundreds of people throughout southwest Michigan – who otherwise would have remained silent - to act on climate change.”

    Congratulations Dr. Keele!


    The Climate Action Award goes to a person doing exceptional work as a volunteer or individual.

    We are thrilled to award Theresa Landrum, a community organizer and activist, has been fighting against Environmental injustices over twenty years. Theresa Landrum was appointed by the Governor to the Michigan Advisory Council on Environmental Justice (MAC-EJ) She also is the Community Education Specialist for the Michigan Environmental Justice Coalition’s Clean Air Council. Theresa Landrum is a life-long Detroiter, and is one of the strongest community activists in Southwest Detroit 48217.  

    As a person who nominated her said,” Theresa is doing the work that NEEDS to be done, work that many are afraid to do. She does it WELL! With grace, yet fire that allows the job to get done! She’s amazing and she also teaches, Instills, and inspires so many others.”

    Congratulations Theresa!


    The Young Climate Leader Award goes to a student or other young person doing exceptional work as a volunteer or individual.

    Congratulations to the winner of this award, Dolores Perales, for her work as a vocal advocate for climate and justice and working closely with the community to develop and sustain green placemaking projects. She also helps facilitate sustainability-based research in partnership with local high schools and universities.

    One of the many people to nominate Dolores wrote “As a classmate of Dolores', I've learned so much from her, and watch her work tirelessly to fundraise and promote events that educate our community. She is an inspiration and deserves the Young Climate Leader award.”

    Congratulations Dolores!


    These awards were made possible by a generous grant from The Colina Foundation

    Congratulations to all of our awardees, and to all of the nominees for these awards. 

  • Episode 16 - Jim MacInnes

    Jim MacInnes, CEO of Crystal Mountain Resort, in Benzie County, Michigan.

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  • Episode 15 - Douglas Jester

    Douglas Jester is a partner at 5 Lakes Energy, specializing in utility regulation and energy and water policy, research, and modeling.

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  • Climate Change Solutions 2021 with Peter Sinclair Webinar

    Watch Peter Sinclair's Climate Change Solutions 2021 webinar held on February 26, 2021.

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  • Line 5 pipeline shutdown adds urgency to Michigan’s propane heating debate

    Shutting down the pipeline would cut off the Upper Peninsula from its supply of cheap propane, but clean energy advocates say there are better alternatives for heating.

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  • published Thanks to Gov. Whitmer for Taking Climate Action in Videos 2021-02-09 12:48:29 -0500

    Thanks to Gov. Whitmer for Taking Climate Action

    We had 650 MiCAN supporters sign a thank you card to Governor Whitmer for taking bold action on climate. Here's the artwork we sent her.

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  • Michigan group helping to keep justice on the state’s environmental agenda

    Michigan Advisory Council on Environmental Justice members say Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s administration is listening to it on issues from pipelines to the pandemic.

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  • EGLE’s Decision to Grant Enbridge Oil Tunnel Permits Out of Touch with Climate Crisis

    Today, Michigan’s Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE) approved a permit Enbridge was seeking to build an oil pipeline tunnel to replace Line 5 under the Straits of Mackinac.

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  • Detroit affordable housing project will give renters benefits of solar ownership

    The unique model would put utility bill savings from solar installation into a fund to help residents cover expenses such as medical bills or college tuition.

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  • Commentary: Distributed energy plays a critical role in Michigan’s carbon-neutral goal

    A new presidential administration in 2021 will change the policy landscape for states that are working toward realizing ambitious carbon neutrality goals.

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  • Commission Orders Judge to Reconsider Exclusion of Climate Change in Enbridge Line 5 Case in Light of Gov. Whitmer’s Line 5 Shutdown Order

    Reacting to Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s order to shut down the Enbridge Line 5 pipeline, the Michigan Public Service Commission today ordered that Administrative Law Judge Dennis Mack re-hear arguments about the scope of environmental impacts that can be considered in the siting permit review of the related oil pipeline tunnel Enbridge proposes building beneath the Mackinac Straits.

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  • Michigan task force makeup suggests the future of transportation is still cars

    Environmental and public transit advocates are dismayed by their exclusion from a new council charged with shaping a vision for “future mobility” in the state.

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  • endorsed 2021-02-05 15:40:07 -0500

    Line 5 Shutdown - Thank Gov. Whitmer

    Thank You Governor WhitmerGovernor Whitmer, along with the Michigan Department of Natural Resources and Attorney General Dana Nessel, have revoked the easement that allowed Enbridge to operate Line 5 in the Great Lakes. This is historic. If ultimately successful, this would be the first time an operating pipeline has ever been shut down.

    It is rare that a politician has the guts to stand up to the most powerful industry on the planet. Please join us in thanking Governor Gretchen Whitmer for taking a politically risky stance on behalf of all Michiganders, and for doing what must be done to protect future generations.

    We'll send your name and comments as a thank you card.

    Governor Whitmer:

    Thank you so much for your audacious action for the Great Lakes, the climate, and the people of Michigan. Thank you for applying public trust law, listening to the science of climate change, and for hearing the thousands of dedicated citizens and organizations that worked to elevate this issue in a way that will protect our environment for generations to come.

    Thank you for taking the courageous steps to shut down Line 5!


  • published Why Vote? in Videos 2020-10-26 18:34:08 -0400

    Why Vote?

    Why don't people vote? It's not necessarily what you think.

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  • Michigan can’t wait until 2050 to reach zero emissions, environmentalists say

    A letter signed by representatives of 40 organizations says the state needs an accelerated timeline for phasing out carbon emissions.

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Producing & directing TV shows, commercials, videos, but mostly trying to make things on this planet better for you and me.


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