Environment Picture

Michigan Environmental Report

Winter 2007

Vol. 25 Issue 1

Quality, ecology are goals of new-look newsletter

Welcome to your new and improved Michigan Environmental Report! This issue marks a new beginning for the Report, which brings you the highlights of issues affecting the health, beauty and economic vitality of our incredible Great Lakes State and the efforts of MEC and its 70-plus member groups to enhance those attributes.
View Article2007-02-01  •  Winter 2007 - Michigan Environmental Report
RELATED TOPICS: MEC Member Groups

Guns on Great Lakes fall silent

Machine gun training spewing unregulated amounts of toxic lead into Great Lakes sediment was halted—then shelved indefinitely—by the U.S. Coast Guard after a chorus of objections from across the region.
View Article2007-02-01  •  Winter 2007 - Michigan Environmental Report

Energy policy: Let’s slow down $20 billion drain on Michigan’s economy

There’s a big fuss in Lansing as the governor, legislators and lobbyists try to find a way to replace revenue that will be lost when Michigan’s Single Business Tax (SBT) dies at the end of the year. And with good reason; our SBT generates a whopping $2 billion every year. Still, that’s chump change compared to the $20 billion Michigan businesses and residents pay vendors in other states and countries just to meet our annual energy needs.
View Article2007-02-01  •  Winter 2007 - Michigan Environmental Report
RELATED TOPICS: clean energy, energy efficiency

Bell ringers! Environmental successes won in recent weeks

Legislation signed by Gov. Jennifer Granholm in late 2006 outlaws several types of mercury-containing medical devices in Michigan. The move helps keep this dangerous neurotoxin out of our landfills and incinerator emissions.
View Article2007-02-01  •  Winter 2007 - Michigan Environmental Report
RELATED TOPICS: legislation

All aboard?

Years of studying rapid transit between Detroit and Ann Arbor may bear fruit this year. The Southeast Michigan Council of Governments (SEMCOG) is proposing a trial commuter train service that could start up within the year and connect to Oakland County as well.
View Article2007-02-01  •  Winter 2007 - Michigan Environmental Report
RELATED TOPICS: transportation policy

Legislation finally addresses billboard proliferation along Michigan roadways

Michigan ranks second in the nation in the number of billboards, according to Scenic Michigan, an affiliate of the national nonprofit group Scenic America. This proliferation of billboards attacks the visual beauty of Michigan. However, with Gov. Jennifer Granholm’s approval of new legislation, positive changes are on the way for 2007.
View Article2007-02-01  •  Winter 2007 - Michigan Environmental Report
RELATED TOPICS: legislation

Smart Investments Series: The Dollars and Sense of Smart Growth

With a 35% increase in population from 1990 to 2000 and a major divestiture by large corporate forest land owners, the resource and nature-rich Keweenaw Peninsula was facing dramatic and the potentially harmful land use changes at the beginning of the new century.
View Article2007-02-01  •  Winter 2007 - Michigan Environmental Report
RELATED TOPICS: land use, Smart Growth

Urban sprawl coming to the U.P., too

Urban sprawl is commonly thought to be a problem only in the outlying fringes of southeast Michigan, or Grand Rapids or Traverse City. But MEC is also tackling this issue in the Upper Peninsula, trying to get ahead of the sprawl curve before it undermines the unique lifestyle and natural resources of the area.
View Article2007-02-01  •  Winter 2007 - Michigan Environmental Report
RELATED TOPICS: land use, Smart Growth

Environmentalist deputized by Al Gore to present climate change facts

A member of the MEC family is a foot soldier for Al Gore. Kathryn Savoie, Environmental Program Director for the Arab Community Center for Economic & Social Services, is helping to spread Gore’s message that global warming is the biggest moral challenge facing civilization.
View Article2007-02-01  •  Winter 2007 - Michigan Environmental Report
RELATED TOPICS: climate change

Proposed nickel mine clears its first hurdle

A proposed Upper Peninsula nickel mine that would create dangerous toxic acid and endanger a pristine ecosystem got preliminary approval in January from Gov. Jennifer Granholm’s administration.
View Article2007-02-01  •  Winter 2007 - Michigan Environmental Report
RELATED TOPICS: land use, water protection

Coalition slams brakes on controversial Big Rock nuclear park proposal

An MEC-led coalition helped stop a controversial proposal to spend millions of taxpayer dollars to acquire the grounds of the former Big Rock Point nuclear power plant near Charlevoix.
View Article0000-00-00  •  Winter 2007 - Michigan Environmental Report
RELATED TOPICS: environmental toxins

Thank you to our generous supporters

We are grateful to the following individuals who made financial contributions to the Michigan Environmental Council since the last edition of the Michigan Environmental Report:
View Article2007-02-01  •  Winter 2007 - Michigan Environmental Report
RELATED TOPICS: charitable giving

Priorities for new legislature run the gamut

A new Michigan Legislature brings new opportunities to protect Michigan’s natural resources. The environmental community is already gearing up for what could shape up as a crucial year for environmental protection. Among our priorities will be the following:
View Article2007-02-01  •  Winter 2007 - Michigan Environmental Report
RELATED TOPICS: legislation

MEC breakfast kicks off new term at Capitol

There is a new landscape at the State Capitol. The November elections brought 40 new faces to Lansing, a shift in power in the State House, and new leadership in both the House and Senate. With these changes come exciting opportunities to pass laws that will promote energy efficiency and renewable energy, phase out toxic chemicals, restore our Great Lakes and protect Michigan’s environment.
View Article0000-00-00  •  Winter 2007 - Michigan Environmental Report

Detroit River cleanup approved for newest Michigan historical marker

The first historical marker for an MEC-sponsored Michigan Conservation Trail was approved by the Michigan Historical Commission in December. The environmental recovery of the Detroit River is the theme of the marker, which will be installed at the entrance to the visitor center of the new Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge in Trenton.
View Article0000-00-00  •  Winter 2007 - Michigan Environmental Report

Smart energy policy starts with getting serious about efficiency

Here’s a story problem: Jim and Judy both got the fancy new electronic thingamawhat for Christmas. Jim pays an extra 9 cents per kilowatt-hour to run the thingamawhat. Judy runs hers for the same amount of time, but offsets its energy use by installing energy efficient lighting and appliances at a cost of 2.6 cents per kilowatt hour.
View Article0000-00-00  •  Winter 2007 - Michigan Environmental Report

Energy plays role in 2006 Michigan election

Environment Michigan’s (EM) New Energy Future platform campaign capitalized on the 2006 election to show broad public support for moving Michigan beyond fossil fuels and toward a cleaner and more secure energy future.
View Article0000-00-00  •  Winter 2007 - Michigan Environmental Report

Annual meeting message:

From toxics to transit, conservancies to CAFOS, and politics to power (renewable, of course!), freewheeling discussions on dozens of key Michigan issues were sprinkled throughout MEC’s annual meeting at the Bengel Wildlife Center near Lansing Dec. 8.
View Article0000-00-00  •  Winter 2007 - Michigan Environmental Report

Antibacterials: More harm than good?

Consumers are hard pressed these days to find hand soap that does not contain antibacterial additives that can actually do more harm than good. More than 700 household products on the market today have antibacterial properties, as compared to only a few dozen in the mid 1990s.
View Article0000-00-00  •  Winter 2007 - Michigan Environmental Report

Victory: Mercury banned from medical products

Dangerous mercury will no longer be allowed in numerous medical devices sold in Michigan after a legislative victory in December.
View Article0000-00-00  •  Winter 2007 - Michigan Environmental Report
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