Bridge Magazine is committed to sharing the best environmental journalism in Michigan, an effort known as #EnviroReads.
Every two weeks, in Bridge’s Michigan Environment Watch, we’ll share a roundup of stories on the Great Lakes or other issues. If you see a story we should include next time, use the hashtag #EnviroReads on Twitter or email Environmental Reporter Jim Malewitz at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Detroit Free Press, March 16
“About a mile-and-a-half underground in north-central Michigan, an almost-forgotten reserve of the potassium-rich mineral salt potash could be worth $65 billion to the Michigan economy,” Keith Matheny reports. “A widely used agricultural fertilizer, Michigan's potash may be some of the purest found anywhere in the world. It's spurring a Colorado engineer and geologist's plan for a more than $700-million mining and processing facility in Osceola County.”
MLive.com, March 21
“Michigan regulators are cracking down on municipal sewage plants in a bid to curb the amount of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances called PFAS or PFCs passing through wastewater facilities into landfills and waterways that feed the Great Lakes,” Garret Ellison reports. “The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality wants sewage plants that treat industrial wastewater to find out which customers are using the robust class of toxic fluorochemicals that are polluting drinking water supplies around the state.”
Detroit Free Press, March 22
“Crumbling barrels of paint waste and solvents containing potentially toxic chemicals have been uncovered in the dirt and mud along the Detroit River during excavation for the new Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge visitor center in Trenton,” Keith Matheny reports. “The pollution is a vestige of Chrysler Corp.'s Trenton Chemical plant that operated at the site on West Jefferson Avenue from 1946 to 1990 — and the barrels were found in areas Chrysler agreed to clean up before the property was sold to Wayne County for a park and nature preserve in 2002, Michigan Department of Environmental Quality officials said. Because of the property sale, and Chrysler's bankruptcy reorganization in 2009, the cost of the cleanup now under way will be borne by taxpayers.”
Toledo Blade, March 15
“A group of fly fishermen is continuing their lengthy fight to try and prevent a fish hatchery along the Au Sable River from dramatically expanding its operation, which the anglers consider a serious threat to the health of this historic trout stream,” Matt Markey reports. “The battle had its start almost five years ago, when Dan Vogler received a permit to expand the more than 100-year-old state fish hatchery here, and send significantly more pollutants into the waterway, which is an officially designated Blue Ribbon Trout Stream.”
Associated Press, March 22
“President Donald Trump has gotten nowhere in his push to kill federal support for cleaning up some of the nation's most prized waterways, as the U.S. House decided Thursday to keep funding at current levels — and in some cases, boost it,” John Flesher reports. “A $1.3 trillion spending package for 2019 making its way through Congress includes nearly $448 million for Environmental Protection Agency programs benefiting regional waters degraded by pollution, overdevelopment and exotic species invasions. That's an increase from $436 million in this year's budget.”