Quality of Life

Michigan is a great place to live. Bridge will report that fact often — and on potential threats to the assets that make it so.


Battle building over fish farming in Great Lakes

September 10, 2015 | Peter Payette

Supporters see a potential $1 billion industry for Michigan, while conservation and sport fishing groups cite the risks of pollution and disease.

Oil and water: Searching for truth on the Mackinac pipeline

August 27, 2015 | Ted Roelofs

With 23 million gallons of oil and gas passing beneath the Straits of Mackinac each day, Bridge weighs the evidence on the safety of Enbridge’s Line 5 pipeline.

Enbridge: Trust us to be safe

August 27, 2015 | Ted Roelofs

Enbridge Energy has historically kept inspection data about the Straits of Mackinac pipeline to itself.

Algae bloom, the sequel, spells big trouble for Lake Erie

August 4, 2015 | Ted Roelofs

This year’s bloom promises to be bigger, slimier and more trouble for marine life than past years. While experts are calling for tougher regulation of industrial farming, the state says Michigan’s current conservation efforts are working.

Voluntary measures haven’t stopped algae blooms in Gulf of Mexico

August 4, 2015 | Ted Roelofs

Fifteen years after landowners along the Mississippi River were asked to help reduce conditions for blooms, there has been no reduction in a marine dead zone in the Gulf of Mexico. One expert suggests tougher regulation.

Where to catch the biggest fish in Michigan

July 30, 2015 | Mike Wilkinson

The state’s Master Angler program rewards those who catch the biggest everything, from bass to pike, crappie to walleye. But its database also rewards novice anglers.

Monster fish finder

July 30, 2015 | Bridge Staff

Use Bridge’s database of data from the Michigan Department of Natural Resources to find where Michigan’s biggest fish are hooked. Plus, see a slideshow of monster fish submitted by readers.

A different kind of house call: The doctor will see you now – remotely

July 23, 2015 | Nancy Derringer

Living far from a major hospital may not always be a hindrance to high-quality health care. Telemedicine can deliver healthcare to rural corners of Michigan, where a specialist may be hundreds of miles away.

In rural Michigan, a doctor shortage promises to get worse

July 21, 2015 | Ted Roelofs

A shortage of primary care doctors is associated with worse health outcomes and higher death rates. What steps Michigan can take to close the doctor gap.

MSU’s mission to train rural doctors

July 21, 2015 | Ted Roelofs

Since 1974, Michigan State University's medical school has offered intensive training for rural primary care physicians

Five years later, state parks Recreation Passport a financial success

July 16, 2015 | Ted Roelofs

Michigan's state park system adapts to budget squeezes and changing values about the outdoors. But major costs kicked down the road.

Dreaming big: A walking trail spanning Michigan’s vast coastline

April 21, 2015 | Chastity Pratt

Could Michigan’s coast tracing the Mitten and Upper Peninsula be the centerpiece of a Great Lakes walking trail? At more than 10,000 miles, a proposed Great Lakes trail would be the world’s longest.

A graying population poses challenges for Up North counties

March 12, 2015 | Nancy Derringer

High up on Michigan’s Mitten, arthritis is creeping into the fingertips. Michigan leads the nation with the most counties with a median age over 50.

Cringe over troubled water - Flint’s smelly dilemma

January 29, 2015 | Chastity Pratt

Flint calls on the state to clear up the city’s low-quality drinking water. Who is responsible for the city’s water problems?

DNR yields to public and will not allow drilling under prized land at Hartwick Pines

September 12, 2014 | Ron French

A Bridge article revealing possible oil leasing under the virgin pines produced a backlash from environmental groups, and from the family that donated the land. The DNR says it may still allow drilling in other parts of the park.

Oil lease proposed under 400-year-old virgin pines

August 7, 2014 | Ron French

The state may allow an oil lease under the largest stand of virgin white pine in the Lower Peninsula. Experts say drilling wouldn't harm trees. But critics fear a booming oil rig at Hartwick Pines State Park.

How to comment on possible oil drilling under Hartwick Pines State Park

August 7, 2014 | Ron French

Revenue and jobs? Or undisturbed quiet? Make your voice heard on drilling proposals. Also, see if you live near a proposed drilling site.

The fish that got away

June 5, 2014 | Eric Sharp

Have plankton-devouring Asian carp finally reached the Great Lakes? After years of trying to block the invasion, the answer is: Nobody knows. Now, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers says it needs another $18 billion to cut the carp’s march up the Mississippi.