The state today approved a permit for Wolverine Power to build a new coal fired plant in Rogers City.
Earlier this year, a circuit court ruled the permit couldn't be denied on the basis that the company failed to show a need for the electricity. That overruled the Granholm Administration.
The new administration chose not to appeal the court's ruling.
Mary Ann Dolehanty, with the state Department of Environmental Quality, says the agency followed a pretty straightforward process in reviewing Wolverine's proposal.
"It's our position that they meet federal and state air quality requirements and that the level of control provided for in the permit is protective of the environment and public health," she says.
A coalition of environmental groups says the permit is badly flawed and there are plenty of other reasons to deny it.
Ann Woiwode, with the Sierra Club, says a new coal plant would still emit a fair amount of mercury.
"And in Michigan where people are wanting to eat fish from the Great lakes and from the lakes that's always going to be an issue," she says.
Wolverine Power is still evaluating whether it makes sense financially to build the plant.
The company, based in Cadillac, supplies electricity to several cooperatives, including Cherryland Electric and Great Lakes Energy.