Rep Canfield heralds new law to help Michigan families of fallen heroes

first_img05Oct Rep. Canfield heralds new law to help Michigan families of fallen heroes The surviving spouse and children of Michigan public safety officers who die in the line of duty will receive much-needed health care coverage under a new law announced today by state Rep. Edward Canfield, D.O. Rep. Canfield, who first voted on the measure as a member of the House Appropriations Committee, said Public Act 284 of 2016 will aid families who have lost a spouse and parent in the line of duty.“First responders are on the front lines every day helping to protect our neighborhoods and families, and we must do everything we can to ensure their families are protected as well,” said Rep. Canfield, R-Sebewaing. “The new law also gives first responders some peace of mind knowing their family will receive medical care if they don’t make it home. It’s certainly not something any of us want to talk about, but it’s immensely important to have this type of protection in place.”The new law provides state-funded health insurance benefits to the spouse and children of local public safety officers killed in the line of duty. The benefits would be provided for 60 months after the death of the public safety officer.“While it’s important to express support for our first responders, it’s even more important to do something tangible to show how much they are appreciated,” Rep. Canfield said. “I applaud the governor for ultimately signing this important legislation to protect the families of those who put their lives on the line to protect us.”Under the new law, “public safety officer” includes law enforcement officers, both paid and volunteer firefighters, rescue squad members and ambulance crew members. Tags: #SB center_img Categories: Canfield Newslast_img read more

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Biomassproduced electricity in the US possible but itll cost

If the U.S. wants to start using wood pellets to produce energy, either the government or power customers will have to pay an extra cost, a new University of Georgia study has found. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Biomass-produced electricity in the US possible, though expensive Explore further Right now, “it’s just not economically feasible to use wood pellets in energy production,” said Bin Mei, associate professor of forest resource finance and economics in UGA’s Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources.Wood pellets are used heavily in European power plants because of a mandate to cut fossil fuel emissions, Mei said, but that energy production is heavily supported by government subsidies.Should U.S. energy providers switch to a “co-firing” method-where a power plant burns both coal and wood pellets, switching between the two-they’d pass on the costs to not only convert to co-firing plants, but also to buy the pricier wood pellets. If a government subsidy won’t pay for the extra costs, Mei said, then consumers would have to pick up the tab.Mei and co-author Michael Wetzstein with Purdue University recently published their findings in Energy Economics.In the U.S., power plants have traditionally used coal to produce electricity, but coal emits high levels of carbon dioxide and other pollutants. The European Union has taken the lead on worldwide efforts to switch to burning biomass instead of coal, while the U.S.’s Clean Power Plan aims to lower the country’s carbon dioxide emissions from power plants by 32 percent from the recorded 2005 levels within the next 25 years. Right now, the U.S. is exporting about 4.8 million tons of wood pellets to Europe to help them meet their power demands.Although European companies have converted, U.S. electricity producers can’t simply abandon their coal-fired plants, Mei said. The plants are designed to last decades and are built at significant costs. But they can be modified to burn some biomass, and wood pellets are one of the easiest things to switch to, he said.Mei and Wetzstein looked at the fluctuating coal and wood pellet prices and incorporated price uncertainty and conversion cost into decision making.In other words, a decline in wood pellet price may not immediately trigger the adoption of mixed fuel of a power plant because of the conversion cost. This is known as the “inertia effect” in financial economics, but government interventions can change this situation.They found that producing power with a mixture of coal and wood pellets simply isn’t a “commercially viable option in most cases,” Mei said. Based on historical price data, “the price pairs fall into the switch-to-coal region, meaning that it is not economical to co-fire wood pellets with coal because the mixed fuel cost increases with the share of wood pellets.”Mei said they found that there would be times when converting plants to co-fire with wood pellets would be triggered, and all of the scenarios would require either a government subsidy or an extra fee charged to power customers.The government would have to pay $8 billion to prompt power plants to convert to using both coal and wood pellets, and $2.7 billion to retain current co-firing power plants, Mei said.”These numbers are roughly comparable to the subsidies and tax credits for solar and wind energy on a per unit basis,” Mei said. “Therefore, renewable energy policies should give equal priorities to wood pellets co-firing as to solar and wind energy in the U.S.” Provided by University of Georgia Credit: CC0 Public Domain Citation: Biomass-produced electricity in the US possible, but it’ll cost (2018, April 25) retrieved 18 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-04-biomass-produced-electricity-itll.html read more

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