Michigan Environment Watch


Here’s what Gretchen Whitmer’s new PFAS water rules mean for Michigan

October 16, 2019 | Jim Malewitz

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer last week proposed limits for seven types of the harmful “forever chemicals” that have been found in drinking water supplies. Just four other states have adopted similar regulations.

Michigan environment roundup: Great Lakes water levels may surge higher

October 16, 2019 | Jim Malewitz

The latest can’t-miss journalism about natural resources in Michigan and the Great Lakes.

Michigan fish fight: Bills would squeeze commercial fishers, help anglers

October 14, 2019 | Jim Malewitz

A key point of contention: Should lawmakers give commercial fishing companies access to lake trout, walleye and yellow perch? Advancing legislation would keep those fish off limits, reserving them exclusively for sportfishing.

A U-M researcher gets public’s help tracking deadly balloons in the Great Lakes

October 14, 2019 | Jim Malewitz

What goes up must come down, and balloon debris is killing wildlife, says Lara O'Brien. She launched a survey in June that’s already found more than 1,000 pieces of balloons along Michigan’s Great Lakes — as far away as Isle Royale.

Michigan environment roundup: Bringing solar power to the Upper Peninsula

October 14, 2019 | Jim Malewitz

The latest can’t-miss journalism about natural resources in Michigan and the Great Lakes.

Michigan seeks to cash in on CBD craze, but hemp harvest not without hiccups

October 7, 2019 | Jonathan Oosting

Michigan’s first-ever hemp harvest is bearing fruit. Now that CBD has gone mainstream, early returns are positive, despite fears of overproduction and overhype.

Michigan businesses don’t have to choose between safe water and bottom line

October 3, 2019 | Riley Beggin

Michigan’s freshwater resources don’t have to be in conflict with smart business investment and partnerships, experts said Thursday at the Center for Michigan’s Water Summit in Lansing.

Enbridge halts Line 5 Michigan ads featuring U.S. scientist, apologizes

September 30, 2019 | Craig Mauger

The Canadian energy company halted the advertisements after MCFN and Bridge Magazine revealed the company did not have permission to run the photo and critics called the ads misleading.

How a U.S. scientist unknowingly starred in an Enbridge Michigan ad campaign

September 30, 2019 | Craig Mauger, Jim Malewitz

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration says it didn’t give Enbridge Energy permission to feature an agency researcher in a statewide advertising campaign to protect the Line 5 oil pipeline. One person who worked with the researcher called the ads “dishonest.”

DTE Energy vows ‘net zero’ on carbon emissions for electric business by 2050

September 26, 2019 | Jim Malewitz

 DTE Electric Co., the state’s largest power provider, said it hopes other utilities will pursue similar goals to slow the earth’s warming from greenhouse gases. The plan drew praise and some skepticism

Memo to Ted Nugent: Not all hunters hate Michigan’s deer bait ban

September 23, 2019 | Jim Malewitz

 A ban on deer baiting is prompting fears of a plunge in hunting (and objections from the Motor City Madman) but conservation groups say the move is necessary to stop chronic wasting disease from decimating the herd.

Talk about Pure Michigan: Outdoor pursuits generate $10B, report says

September 23, 2019 | Mike Wilkinson

A new federal report for the first time puts a dollar figure on the boating, RVing, hiking and skiing that Michigan loves. The amount is less than industry groups have touted, offering an opportunity for growth.

Algae is again fouling Lake Erie. Thanks a lot, Ohio.

September 6, 2019 | Mike Wilkinson

As water quality fears rise, many Michigan farmers are doing their part to stem the flow of algae-producing nutrients, widespread measures that Ohio can only dream of.

Higgins Lake’s crystal waters are under threat. Blame poop (and other stuff)

September 6, 2019 | Joel Kurth

It’s not just Higgins Lake. Leaky septic systems and fertilizers are leading to a growth of algae in northern Michigan’s clear water lakes and could require big-time investments to fix.

Audit: Michigan Office of the Great Lakes didn't keep track of money

August 30, 2019 | Jim Malewitz

The government agency is supposed to restore wetlands, but hasn’t updated action plans for years and failed to keep tabs on grants, an audit finds.

Rising waters of Lake Michigan assault Grand Traverse coast. In photos.

August 28, 2019 | John L. Russell

Vanishing beaches. Swamped piers. Snapped concrete. Near-record high waters battered the scenic peninsula from Traverse City to Leland.

Battle looms over laws to slow spread of invasive species in Great Lakes

August 26, 2019 | Jim Malewitz, Sarah Whites-Koditschek

Ballast water regulations have limited the introduction of new species in the Great Lakes, but new research shows they may be spread by domestic freighters. The shipping industry claims new rules would cost hundreds of millions of dollars.

Michigan environment roundup: State says Flint is violating Safe Drinking Water Act

August 26, 2019 | Jim Malewitz

The latest can’t-miss journalism about natural resources in Michigan and the Great Lakes.

Opinion | Wind turbines helping fund schools? It’s happening in Michigan

August 26, 2019 | Peter Sinclair

An unexpected funding source – revenue from wind turbines – is helping some Michigan schools stay afloat.

All eyes on Grand Traverse Bay as deadline looms for tribal fishing decree

August 22, 2019 | Jim Malewitz

A consent decree that carves out fishing rights in the Great Lakes for five Michigan tribes is set to expire next August and negotiations have yet to start with the state. The outcome could shape fisheries for decades.