Environment Picture
Topic: Great Lakes

First #HowYouDune freshwater dune summit celebrates Michigan’s coastal treasures

Michigan Environmental Report
More than 60 scientists, natural resource professionals, outdoor recreation enthusiasts and others gathered in Muskegon on May 7–8 for the Freshwater Dune Summit, organized by Michigan Environmental Council and our partners at Heart of the Lakes and West Michigan Environmental Action Council.
View ArticleJul 31, 2017  •  Spring / Summer 2017 - Michigan Environmental Report

2017 Environmental Programs Budget Analysis

Michigan Environmental Report
In June the Michigan legislature passed the budget for the upcoming fiscal year. MEC and our partners at Michigan League of Conservation Voters commissioned a budget analysis of the combined impacts of proposed federal budget cuts outlined in President Trump’s budget and the state budget cuts being considered for environment protection programs and activities. We released our report during legislative budget negotiations, providing the first-ever analysis to review the impact of both state and federal budget decisions and how they will affect Michigan’s ability to protect our residents and environment. The combined impact of these cuts is enormous and, quite frankly, puts at risk our state’s ability to protect the Great Lakes, our water resources including drinking water, and the cleanup of contaminated sites across the state.
View ArticleJul 6, 2017  •  Spring / Summer 2017 - Michigan Environmental Report

MEC statement: State should immediately release Line 5 report draft

Press Releases
The Michigan Environmental Council on Wednesday called for the immediate release of a draft report on the risk of the Enbridge Line 5 pipeline in the Straits of Mackinac -- set to be made public in just days -- that was scuttled when state officials terminated a contract with the firm preparing the report due to a conflict of interest.
Read MoreJun 21, 2017

Michigan House says bare minimum is good enough for Great Lakes

Press Releases
Legislation passed by the House of Representatives would cede Michigan's environmental authority to the federal government and prohibit state leaders from doing anything more than the bare minimum to protect public health or natural treasures like the Great Lakes, the Michigan Environmental Council said.
Read MoreMay 18, 2017

Freshwater Dune Summit to celebrate globally rare Great Lakes coastal sand dunes

Press Releases
Outdoor adventurers, sand dune advocates, academic researchers and tourism professionals will gather in Muskegon May 7-8 to celebrate the region's globally rare freshwater dunes and the unique quality of life they provide for Great Lakes coastal communities. The first Freshwater Dune Summit, held at the Holiday Inn Muskegon Harbor, will combine insights from expert speakers with opportunities for exploring the Lake Michigan shoreline and enjoying the local food and beer scene.
Read MoreApr 14, 2017

Freshwater Dune Summit is May 7-8 in Muskegon; #howyoudune combines advocates, science and adventure in support of Great Lakes coastal dunes

Michigan Environmental Report
Registration is now open for this first-time event welcoming outdoor adventurers, sand dune advocates, academic researchers and tourism professionals with a casual mix of recreation, information, and local food and beer, all in celebration of the beauty and value of our amazing natural asset.
View ArticleMar 17, 2017  •  Fall 2016 / Winter 2017 - Michigan Environmental Report

Michigan Environmental Council lays out policy agenda for 2017-2018

Press Releases
Testing all children for lead exposure, passing a statewide code for septic systems and becoming the first state east of the Mississippi River to open an Office of Outdoor Recreation are among the priorities in a new policy agenda unveiled Monday by the Michigan Environmental Council.
Read MoreJan 30, 2017

Michigan Environmental Council Policy Priorities 2017-2018

Research Reports
Following the Flint water crisis, it is clear that state government must refocus its attention on protecting public health and the environment. Michigan Environmental Council will focus on the following priorities in the 2017-2018 legislative session. These policy priorities were developed in collaboration with our member organizations from throughout Michigan.
Download ReportJan 30, 2017

MEC applauds infrastructure recommendations, urges leaders to follow through

Press Releases
The Michigan Environmental Council praised the recommendations put forth Monday by Gov. Rick Snyder’s 21st Century Infrastructure Commission and urged policymakers to significantly increase investments to offset years of underfunding for safe drinking water, public transit, clean energy and other components of a healthy Michigan with a high quality of life.
Read MoreDec 5, 2016

MEC applauds state recommendation to keep fish farms out of the Great Lakes

Press Releases
The Michigan Environmental Council praised a recommendation from three state agencies that Michigan not allow net-pen aquaculture in the Great Lakes.
Read MoreMar 9, 2016

MEC: Waukesha's Great Lakes withdrawal proposal doesn't hold water

Press Releases
A Wisconsin city has failed to demonstrate a sufficient need to divert water from Lake Michigan, and Gov. Rick Snyder should use his authority under the 2008 Great Lakes Compact to reject the proposed withdrawal, the Michigan Environmental Council said Tuesday.
Read MoreMar 1, 2016

MEC submits comments on state’s 30-year water strategy

Michigan Environmental Report
MEC and several of our partners and members submitted formal comments on the draft document, Sustaining Michigan’s Water Heritage: A Strategy for the Next Generation, created by the Office of the Great Lakes (OGL) at the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality
View ArticleFeb 19, 2016  •  Winter 2016 - Michigan Environmental Report

Ten surprising facts in Michigan’s new water strategy

Michigan Environmental Report
Crafting a 30-year strategy to position Michigan’s abundant (and awesome) water assets in a national and global context is no easy feat. MEC is grateful to Governor Snyder for asking for such a plan, and to Jon Allan and his team at the Office of Great Lakes (OGL) for pulling a laudable draft of one together. More discussion of the water strategy is below, but first, here are the top ten surprises I found in digging through the document. Take a look for yourself, and see what surprises you!
View ArticleFeb 19, 2016  •  Winter 2016 - Michigan Environmental Report
RELATED TOPICS: Water Protection, Great Lakes

Fish farms don’t belong in the Great Lakes

Michigan Environmental Report
This article was originally published in the Detroit Free Press and is reprinted here with permission. Multiple proposals to put fish farms in our shared Great Lakes waters are under consideration by state officials. We find it deeply troubling that this idea is even on the table. Michigan officials have been approached with at least two proposals for fish farms, in Lake Michigan near Escanaba and off Rogers City in Lake Huron. State agencies have assembled a panel to look into these plans and explore the possibility of aquaculture in Michigan’s Great Lakes.
View ArticleFeb 19, 2016  •  Winter 2016 - Michigan Environmental Report

Poll finds overwhelming public opposition to Great Lakes fish farming proposals

Press Releases
Michigan residents overwhelmingly oppose proposals to allow commercial fish farming in the Great Lakes, poll results released Tuesday show. The EPIC-MRA poll found that nearly 7 in 10 Michiganders are against opening Michigan's Great Lakes waters to commercial net-pen aquaculture. The opposition cut across geographic, political and demographic lines and increased when participants learned more about the issue.
Read MoreFeb 2, 2016

Fish Farming EPIC MRA statewide poll

Research Reports
State officials are considering multiple proposals to site commercial fish farms in Michigan's Great Lakes waters, where none are currently permitted. Recent state reports confirmed many of the environmental concerns raised by conservation groups, including the dumping of untreated waste into the Great Lakes, potential disease transmission to wild fish and the possibility that escaped farm fish will breed with wild fish, weakening the genetic diversity and hardiness of Great Lakes fish populations. EPIC-MRA poll results on Great Lakes aquaculture show that Michigan residents overwhelmingly favor taking steps to keep commercial fish farming out of public waters.
Download ReportFeb 1, 2016

State should heed science panel's findings, keep fish farms out of Great Lakes

Press Releases
State reports issued this week on proposals to farm fish in Michigan's public waters make it clear that commercial aquaculture has no place in the Great Lakes, environmental and conservation groups say. The reports were the product of workgroups assembled by the departments of Natural Resources, Environmental Quality and Agriculture and Rural Development to look into the scientific, environmental, economic and regulatory considerations regarding potential Great Lakes aquaculture.
Read MoreOct 30, 2015

Michigan's draft 30-year water strategy is topic of July 28 community conversation in Detroit

Research Reports
The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality's Office of the Great Lakes and its partner agencies are hosting Water Strategy Community Conversations across Michigan to invite comment and discussion on a draft 30-year Water Strategy. The public is encouraged to attend to learn more about the draft Water Strategy and discuss opportunities for involvement in implementation. Experience the Department of Natural Resources' new Outdoor Adventure Center and share your ideas for Michigan's water future at a community conversation in Detroit on Tuesday, July 28. For a full list of upcoming community conversations, visit michigan.gov/waterstrategy.
Download ReportJul 22, 2015

Pipeline safety report includes the right ideas, now needs strong action

Press Releases
Pipeline safety recommendations issued today by state officials will go a long way toward safeguarding the Great Lakes and Michigan's inland waters from oil spills, but only if they are implemented with a sense of urgency and accountability, water-protection advocates said.
Read MoreJul 14, 2015
RELATED TOPICS: Great Lakes, Water Protection

Great Lakes champion Buchsbaum, Rouge restorer Craig earn top environmental awards

Press Releases
The Michigan Environmental Council (MEC) next week will honor two outstanding advocates for the Great Lakes and Michigan's inland waters and wildlife. Andy Buchsbaum -- whose leadership and vision made possible recent landmark protections for the Great Lakes -- will receive the Helen & William Milliken Distinguished Service Award. Bill Craig -- a tireless volunteer dedicated to restoring the Rouge River and conserving natural areas -- will receive the Petoskey Prize for Environmental Leadership. The awards will be presented Wednesday, June 24 at a celebration in Ann Arbor starting at 5:30 p.m. For information on the event, call 517-487-9539.
Read MoreJun 19, 2015

Milliken Award recipient Andy Buchsbaum: Accomplished Great Lakes guardian

Michigan Environmental Report
Early in Andy Buchsbaum’s college internship, Ralph Nader dropped by to say hello. The position was with Congress Watch, part of Nader’s consumer advocacy group Public Citizen. The political activist’s remarks to the interns were brief, but they marked a turning point in Buchsbaum’s life. “He said, ‘How can you see something that’s wrong and not do anything about it?’” Buchsbaum remembers. “That’s always stayed with me. After that moment, that was it for me. That’s what I was going to do.”
View ArticleJun 18, 2015  •  Spring/Summer 2015 - Michigan Environmental Report

August 19 Day of Action -- Keep Oil Out of the Great Lakes

News Updates
The Great Lakes are Michigan’s most treasured natural resource. But an oil pipeline running through the Straits of Mackinac is putting the Great Lakes at risk.
View ArticleAug 15, 2014

MEC connects WMU students, state lawmakers on Mackinac Straits oil pipeline issue

News Updates
Dozens of Western Michigan University (WMU) students descended on the State Capitol and the Michigan Environmental Council (MEC) office Wednesday, asking state legislators to address Enbridge Energy Company’s aging oil pipeline beneath the Straits of Mackinac.
View ArticleFeb 27, 2014

Dave Dempsey: Author, historian, policy expert and steadfast defender of the Great Lakes

Michigan Environmental Report
The sound was like thunder. Bass-heavy, ground-shaking booms at rhythmic intervals. It lured Dave Dempsey from his sleeping bag one fine summer day in 1981. What he found mesmerized him and forever guided his career path.
View ArticleJun 20, 2013  •  Spring 2013 - Michigan Environmental Report

EPA may end SS Badger's long run on coal

News Updates
The iconic Michigan steamship, the SS Badger, may lose its permit to dump spent coal into Lake Michigan.
View ArticleMar 7, 2013

Great Lakes, energy and trail network on 2013 agenda

Michigan Environmental Report
A slate of environmental and energy policy initiatives was outlined by Gov. Rick Snyder during his Nov. 28 special address on energy and the environment, including stronger clean energy policies and Great Lakes protections, strategic planning for public lands and development of a trail network spanning the state.
View ArticleJan 17, 2013  •  Fall 2012 - Michigan Environmental Report
RELATED TOPICS: Great Lakes, Land Use, Clean Energy

Great Lakes Trivia Quiz

Michigan Environmental Report
The days are long and hot, amplifying our appreciation for our deep and (mostly) clear lakes. Let’s celebrate Michigan’s special place on the planet—in the cradle of the greatest freshwater system on Earth—by testing your knowledge of the Great Lakes and Michigan’s water resources.
View ArticleJun 15, 2012  •  Spring 2012 - Michigan Environmental Report

Bell ringers! Environmental successes won in recent weeks

Michigan Environmental Report
Michigan’s public transportation and passenger railroad service both got good news in May. The public transportation budget recommended by Gov. Rick Snyder and passed by the legislature retained existing funding levels—good news in a budget that otherwise cut natural resource protection budgets.
View ArticleJun 5, 2011  •  Spring 2011 - Michigan Environmental Report

Asian carp expert: Great Lakes tributaries may be more at risk than the lakes themselves

Michigan Environmental Report
Google “Asian carp,” and you’ll return 348,000 hits. Not as many as Lindsay Lohan (21.3 million) but still plenty of choices from which to glean information on the voracious fish knocking on the door of the Great Lakes.
View ArticleDec 14, 2010  •  Fall 2010 - Michigan Environmental Report

Great Lakes Health Banner making a comeback!

Michigan Environmental Report
The Great Lakes Health Banner—a powerful documentary of the work of Great Lakes and Michigan organizations concerned about the health effects of toxins and the lack of effective action by elected officials—is making a comeback.
View ArticleDec 14, 2008  •  Fall 2008 - Michigan Environmental Report

New law: A major step forward in protecting Michigan’s water

Michigan Environmental Report
New protection for Michigan’s water, including legislation authorizing Michigan’s entry into the Great Lakes–St. Lawrence River Basin Water Resources Compact (the Compact), was signed into law by Gov. Jennifer Granholm in July. The Compact is an agreement among the eight U.S. Great Lakes states and two Canadian provinces to prevent diversions and regulate withdrawals that would harm the waters of the Great Lakes.
View ArticleAug 11, 2008  •  Summer 2008 - Michigan Environmental Report

Agreement scores new, concrete protections for Michigan water resources

Press Releases
A bipartisan agreement announced today establishes important and concrete protections for Michigan’s streams and makes water conservation an integral part of the state’s water stewardship efforts.
Read MoreJun 23, 2008

Compact OK’d, but important water safeguards overlooked by State Senate

Michigan Environmental Report
Michigan’s House and Senate approved the eight-state Great Lakes Compact in mid-May, but protection for the state’s majestic waterways was still uncertain at press time as key additional protections remained in limbo.
View ArticleMay 29, 2008  •  Spring 2008 - Michigan Environmental Report
RELATED TOPICS: Great Lakes, Water Protection

Bad medicine:

Michigan Environmental Report
Flushing prescription medicine down the toilet puts it out of sight and out of mind—but doesn’t necessarily render it harmless.
View ArticleJan 1, 2008  •  Winter 2008 - Michigan Environmental Report

Something's Amuck: Algae blooms return to Michigan shores

Research Reports
Repulsive, potentially toxic clumps of algae are likely to reappear this summer to plague swimmers and beachcombers from the bays of Grand Traverse to the shores of Lake Erie. The troubling return of algae is a throwback to the days when rampant pollution of the Great Lakes led researchers to declare Lake Erie "dead" in the 1970s. And it is a warning that the state can not afford to ignore, concludes a report released by the Michigan Environmental Council. "Something's Amuck: Algae blooms return to Michigan shores" illustrates how invasive species, combined with legal loopholes that encourage phosphorus pollution, have opened the door for algae's comeback.
Download ReportJun 1, 2006
RELATED TOPICS: Water Protection, Great Lakes
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