environmental protection agency http://michiganradio.org en Politics, profits delay action on arsenic in drinking water http://michiganradio.org/post/politics-profits-delay-action-arsenic-drinking-water <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Arsenic is nearly synonymous with poison. But most people don't realize that they consume small amounts of it in the food they eat and the water they drink.</span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Recent research suggests even small levels of arsenic may be harmful. In fact, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has been prepared to say since 2008 that arsenic is 17 times more toxic as a carcinogen than the agency now reports.</span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Women are especially vulnerable.&nbsp;</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">EPA scientists have concluded that if 100,000 women consumed the legal limit of arsenic each day, 730 of them eventually would get lung or bladder cancer.</span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">The EPA, however, hasn’t been able to make its findings official, an action that could trigger stricter drinking water standards. The roadblock: a single paragraph inserted into a committee report by a member of Congress, an investigation by the Center for Public Integrity found.</span></p><p> Wed, 02 Jul 2014 14:33:00 +0000 David Heath 18220 at http://michiganradio.org Politics, profits delay action on arsenic in drinking water Small businesses welcome carbon emission regulations http://michiganradio.org/post/small-businesses-welcome-carbon-emission-regulations <p><span style="color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: arial; font-size: small; line-height: normal;">Support is growing within the small business community for tighter limits on carbon emissions, which contribute to climate change.</span></p> Wed, 25 Jun 2014 22:24:15 +0000 Michigan Radio Newsroom 18151 at http://michiganradio.org Small businesses welcome carbon emission regulations Workgroup starts crafting Michigan’s new energy policy this week http://michiganradio.org/post/workgroup-starts-crafting-michigan-s-new-energy-policy-week <p>State law forces power companies to get 10% of their power from renewable sources, like wind and solar, by next year. It’s a target they’re expected to meet.</p><p>The state issued a report <a href="http://michiganradio.org/post/michigan-could-get-30-its-energy-renewable-sources">last year that shows companies could get as much at 30% by 2035</a>. But there’s no law that requires that, yet. It’s something a workgroup will consider as it works this summer to update Michigan’s energy policy.</p><p>State Senator Mike Nofs (R-Battle Creek) will help lead the group.</p> Sun, 01 Jun 2014 17:00:00 +0000 Lindsey Smith 17813 at http://michiganradio.org Workgroup starts crafting Michigan’s new energy policy this week Obama administration wants more money for Great Lakes Restoration Initiative http://michiganradio.org/post/obama-administration-wants-more-money-great-lakes-restoration-initiative <p>A popular program to improve the environment around the Great Lakes could be extended. A task force including 11 federal agencies and led by the Environmental Protection Agency <a href="http://glri.us/pdfs/20140530-draft-glri-action-plan-2-reduced.pdf">released a draft of the updated plan Friday</a> for public review.</p><p>Congress has already approved $1.6 billion on the <a href="http://michiganradio.org/term/great-lakes-restoration-initiative">Great Lakes Restoration Initiative</a>. An updated blueprint calls for another $275 million annually over the next five years.&nbsp;</p><p>A big chunk of that money helped jump start efforts to clean up industrial pollution that happened decades ago. There are 14 of these so-called "toxic hot spots" in Michigan on a list of Areas of Concern. Cleanup efforts have been underway since the 1980s.</p><p>“They’ve been on the list for far too long. We need to give these harbor side and riverside communities some relief and get them cleaned up,” Cameron Davis said. He’s a senior advisor to the administrator at the Environmental Protection Agency. Fri, 30 May 2014 21:28:05 +0000 Lindsey Smith 17812 at http://michiganradio.org Obama administration wants more money for Great Lakes Restoration Initiative Michigan residents would pay $9 less per month for power under efficiency plan http://michiganradio.org/post/michigan-residents-would-pay-9-less-month-power-under-efficiency-plan <p>Michigan residents would save around $9 a month by 2020 under a plan to improve energy efficiency. That’s according to <a href="http://www.nrdc.org/air/pollution-standards/state-benefits.asp">analysis released today by the Natural Resources Defense Council.</a></p><p>The group’s plan comes out less than a week before federal regulators are expected to unveil a new plan to drastically cut carbon emissions, which scientists believe contribute to climate change.</p> Thu, 29 May 2014 21:25:10 +0000 Lindsey Smith 17804 at http://michiganradio.org Michigan residents would pay $9 less per month for power under efficiency plan U.S. Supreme Court ruling may help clear the air in Michigan http://michiganradio.org/post/us-supreme-court-ruling-may-help-clear-air-michigan <p>Clean air advocates in Michigan are cheering a U.S. Supreme Court decision that will allow stricter regulation of coal-fired power plants.</p><p></p><p>The high court decided this week to overturn a lower court ruling and allow the Environmental Protection Agency to slap new limits on pollution from power plants.</p><p></p> Tue, 29 Apr 2014 21:41:49 +0000 Steve Carmody 17411 at http://michiganradio.org U.S. Supreme Court ruling may help clear the air in Michigan Paperwork coming together to remove White Lake from list of toxic hot spots in Great Lakes region http://michiganradio.org/post/paperwork-coming-together-remove-white-lake-list-toxic-hot-spots-great-lakes-region <p>An inland lake north of Muskegon that was once one of the most polluted places surrounding the Great Lakes is making big progress. Most of the pollution in <a href="http://epa.gov/greatlakes/aoc/whitelake/index.html">White Lake was caused by a chemical company</a> that dumped waste into the water decades ago.</p><p>Efforts to clean the leftover chemicals from the environment have been underway since the late 1980s.</p> Fri, 04 Apr 2014 11:00:00 +0000 Lindsey Smith 17097 at http://michiganradio.org Paperwork coming together to remove White Lake from list of toxic hot spots in Great Lakes region EPA says decision about Kalamazoo’s ‘Mount PCB’ will come this summer http://michiganradio.org/post/epa-says-decision-about-kalamazoo-s-mount-pcb-will-come-summer <p>The Environmental Protection Agency hopes to select a cleanup plan by this summer for an old landfill site in Kalamazoo that's full of toxic material.</p><p><a href="http://www.epa.gov/Region5/cleanup/alliedpaper/">The Allied site </a>served as a dumping ground for the paper mill industry for decades. There are 1.5 million cubic yards of material at the site laced with polychlorinated biphenyl, or PCBs. Some neighbors have <a href="http://michiganradio.org/post/kalamazoo-residents-struggle-epa-over-mount-pcb">dubbed it Mount PCB.</a></p> Thu, 20 Feb 2014 14:11:21 +0000 Lindsey Smith 16523 at http://michiganradio.org EPA says decision about Kalamazoo’s ‘Mount PCB’ will come this summer White Lake could become Michigan’s first to come off U.S-Canada list of pollution hot spots http://michiganradio.org/post/white-lake-could-become-michigan-s-first-come-us-canada-list-pollution-hot-spots <p>An inland lake north of Muskegon is expected to reach a major milestone this year. Officials anticipate White Lake will be removed from a list of the most-polluted places surrounding the Great Lakes this year.</p><p><a href="http://www.epa.gov/glnpo/aoc/whitelake/index.html">According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency</a>, most of the pollution in White Lake was caused by a chemical company that dumped waste into the water.</p> Mon, 27 Jan 2014 15:46:40 +0000 Lindsey Smith 16187 at http://michiganradio.org White Lake could become Michigan’s first to come off U.S-Canada list of pollution hot spots Groups ask EPA to study Lake Superior basin mining http://michiganradio.org/post/groups-ask-epa-study-lake-superior-basin-mining <p><span style="color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: arial; font-size: small; line-height: normal;">ST. PAUL, Minn. Tue, 17 Dec 2013 17:39:52 +0000 The Associated Press 15726 at http://michiganradio.org Groups ask EPA to study Lake Superior basin mining Big changes are coming to wetland regulations in Michigan http://michiganradio.org/post/big-changes-are-coming-wetland-regulations-michigan <p>Michigan has <a href="http://www.michigan.gov/documents/deq/wrd-waterwords-2013-10-08_436561_7.pdf">lost millions of acres of wetlands </a>over the last century. But the state’s still got roughly five million acres left.&nbsp;</p><p>“Wetlands are really, really important to clean water. They’ve been called nature’s nurseries and nature’s kidneys,” said Grenetta Thomassey, who heads <a href="http://www.watershedcouncil.org/">Tip of the Mitt Watershed Council </a>in Petoskey.</p> Tue, 10 Dec 2013 13:30:00 +0000 Lindsey Smith 15575 at http://michiganradio.org Big changes are coming to wetland regulations in Michigan Federal regulators say PCB cleanup in Kalamazoo River gaining momentum http://michiganradio.org/post/federal-regulators-say-pcb-cleanup-kalamazoo-river-gaining-momentum <p>People in Kalamazoo won’t have to wait much longer for a federal decision about what to do with an <a href="http://michiganradio.org/post/kalamazoo-residents-struggle-epa-over-mount-pcb">old landfill site that's full of toxic material.</a></p><p>The Allied site is where a paper mill dumped waste for decades. The pile is laced with p<span class="st">olychlorinated biphenyls (</span>PCBs). They can <a href="http://www.epa.gov/solidwaste/hazard/tsd/pcbs/pubs/effects.htm">cause cancer and other health effects</a>, according to the Environmental Protection Agency.</p> Thu, 05 Dec 2013 16:46:19 +0000 Lindsey Smith 15549 at http://michiganradio.org Federal regulators say PCB cleanup in Kalamazoo River gaining momentum Federal regulators won’t grant Enbridge more time to dredge oil from Kalamazoo River http://michiganradio.org/post/federal-regulators-won-t-grant-enbridge-more-time-dredge-oil-kalamazoo-river <p>The Environmental Protection Agency will not extend the December 31 deadline it gave Enbridge Energy to finish dredging oil from portions of the Kalamazoo River. &nbsp;In March the EPA <a href="http://www.epa.gov/region5/enbridgespill/index.html">ordered Enbridge to remove up to 18,000 gallons </a>of submerged oil by the end of the year.</p><p>The oil is left over from the<a href="http://michiganradio.org/term/kalamazoo-river-oil-spill"> 2010 pipeline rupture</a>. More than 800,000 gallons of crude oil leaked from the Enbridge pipeline. The spill affected almost 40 miles of the Kalamazoo River.</p><p>Enbridge says <a href="http://michiganradio.org/post/enbridge-will-miss-deadline-finish-cleaning-2010-kalamazoo-river-oil-spill">it cannot meet the deadline</a>, but could complete the work by October of 2014. This month the <a href="http://michiganradio.org/term/kalamazoo-river-oil-spill">company asked the EPA </a>to extend that deadline. Mon, 02 Dec 2013 20:14:24 +0000 Lindsey Smith 15505 at http://michiganradio.org Federal regulators won’t grant Enbridge more time to dredge oil from Kalamazoo River Enbridge starts more dredging this week, hopes to finish most projects by December 31 deadline http://michiganradio.org/post/enbridge-starts-more-dredging-week-hopes-finish-most-projects-december-31-deadline <p>This week an oil pipeline company began another project to dredge oil that remains from the 2010 Kalamazoo River spill.</p><p>Enbridge Energy spokesman Jason Manshum says the company is working near the mouth of Morrow Lake in Kalamazoo County. But they have to complete the work before ice starts to form.</p><p>“If we need to look at doing something there in 2014 we certainly will. But right now our focus is to try to get this done while we still have favorable weather conditions,” Manshum said.</p> Wed, 20 Nov 2013 21:52:29 +0000 Lindsey Smith 15363 at http://michiganradio.org Enbridge starts more dredging this week, hopes to finish most projects by December 31 deadline Enbridge will miss deadline to finish cleaning up 2010 Kalamazoo River oil spill http://michiganradio.org/post/enbridge-will-miss-deadline-finish-cleaning-2010-kalamazoo-river-oil-spill <p>An oil pipeline company will miss the EPA’s year-end deadline to complete its cleanup of the 2010 Kalamazoo River oil spill.</p><p>More than 800 thousand gallons of crude leaked from a pipeline owned by Enbridge Energy. The spill fouled more than 30 miles of the Kalamazoo River.</p><p>In March, federal regulators gave Enbridge until December 31st to finish removing the remaining submerged oil in the river.</p> Wed, 06 Nov 2013 13:42:00 +0000 Steve Carmody 15155 at http://michiganradio.org Enbridge will miss deadline to finish cleaning up 2010 Kalamazoo River oil spill Michigan town looks forward to cleaning up mess left behind by chemical company http://michiganradio.org/post/michigan-town-looks-forward-cleaning-mess-left-behind-chemical-company <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Forty years ago a chemical mix-up led to one of Michigan’s worst environmental tragedies, and it’s not over yet.</span></p><p>The mix-up occurred in early 1973 at the former Michigan Chemical Corporation plant (which later became the Vesicol&nbsp;Chemical Corporation) in St. Louis, Mich. The company accidentally shipped flame-retardant chemicals to livestock farms around the state.</p><p>Farmers thought they were getting a feed supplement. Instead, they were dosing their animals with the toxic chemical <a href="http://www.epa.gov/fedfac/pdf/technical_fact_sheet_pbde_pbb.pdf">PBB</a>.</p><p>The problem wasn’t discovered for another year -- and the chemicals were passed up the food chain to humans. Thu, 17 Oct 2013 13:00:00 +0000 Lindsey Smith & Mark Brush 14869 at http://michiganradio.org Michigan town looks forward to cleaning up mess left behind by chemical company PCB cleanup in Portage Creek in Kalamazoo finishing under budget, ahead of schedule http://michiganradio.org/post/pcb-cleanup-portage-creek-kalamazoo-finishing-under-budget-ahead-schedule <p>For decades, paper mills dumped waste into the Kalamazoo River. Some of it had polychlorinated biphenyls; or PCBs. People can be exposed to PCBs by eating fish from the Kalamazoo River. PCBs can cause cancer, and other health problems.</p><p>Workers are <a href="http://michiganradio.org/post/epa-delays-decision-mount-pcb-cleanup-continues-another-site">wrapping up a project </a>to remove toxic chemicals from Portage Creek near downtown Kalamazoo.</p> Mon, 14 Oct 2013 17:55:44 +0000 Lindsey Smith 14791 at http://michiganradio.org PCB cleanup in Portage Creek in Kalamazoo finishing under budget, ahead of schedule Federal judge approves Lake Michigan coal-dumping deal http://michiganradio.org/post/federal-judge-approves-lake-michigan-coal-dumping-deal <p>Federal District Court Judge Janet T. Neff approved a plan that would allow &ldquo;the country&rsquo;s last coal-dumping ferryboat&rdquo; to continue operations as it shifts from unloading coal waste into Lake Michigan to storing the ash elsewhere.</p><p>The agreement settles a dispute between the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Lake Michigan Carferry company over the coal ash discarded in Lake Michigan, and the impacts of such discharging.</p> Fri, 11 Oct 2013 17:18:23 +0000 Michigan Radio Newsroom 14817 at http://michiganradio.org Federal judge approves Lake Michigan coal-dumping deal EPA chief will speak in Ann Arbor today http://michiganradio.org/post/epa-chief-will-speak-ann-arbor-today <p>The new chief of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pvlipZRF8h0#t=60">Gina McCarthy</a>, will be speaking at a conference being held at the University of Michigan&#39;s Law School this evening.</p><p>It&#39;s part of a three-stop tour for the new EPA Administrator who has the tall task of leading the Obama Administration&#39;s efforts to control carbon emissions.</p><p>Here she is talking about their proposed efforts to curb emissions (can you tell she&#39;s from Boston?):</p><p>http://epa.gov/adminweb/multimedia/newscontent/2013-9-20-oa/audio/2013-09-20_carbon.mp3</p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">From an EPA&nbsp;</span><a href="http://yosemite.epa.gov/opa/admpress.nsf/0/171675597CCB343285257BF0007C12EB" style="line-height: 1.5;">press release</a><span style="line-height: 1.5;">:</span></p><blockquote><p><span style="color: rgb(21, 21, 21); font-family: Arial; font-size: 13px; line-height: 19px;">...Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Gina McCarthy will begin a three-day trip where she will speak to students, businesses and other stakeholders on EPA&#39;s recent carbon pollution standards proposal for new power plants, and President Obama&rsquo;s Climate Action Plan to reduce carbon pollution.</span></p></blockquote><p><span style="color: rgb(21, 21, 21); font-family: Arial; font-size: 13px; line-height: 19px;">The EPA has <a href="http://www2.epa.gov/carbon-pollution-standards/2013-proposed-carbon-pollution-standard-new-power-plants">proposed carbon pollution standards for <strong>new</strong> power plants</a>, and the agency is <a href="http://www2.epa.gov/carbon-pollution-standards/questions-state-partners">hoping to work with states</a> to develop standards for <strong>existing </strong>power plants.</span></p><p><span style="color: rgb(21, 21, 21); font-family: Arial; font-size: 13px; line-height: 19px;">The EPA&#39;s authority to regulate carbon dioxide emissions was supported by a <a href="http://www.supremecourt.gov/opinions/06pdf/05-1120.pdf">2007 U.S. Supreme Court decision</a>. The intense political pressure and complexity around power plant carbon dioxide regulations has slowed the process for putting power plant regulations in place.&nbsp;</span><span style="color: rgb(21, 21, 21); font-family: Arial; font-size: 12.727272033691406px; line-height: 18.99147605895996px;">It&#39;s been more than six years since the Supreme Court ruling.</span></p><p> Thu, 26 Sep 2013 16:30:20 +0000 Mark Brush 14600 at http://michiganradio.org EPA chief will speak in Ann Arbor today Michigan getting more federal money to cleanup brownfield sites http://michiganradio.org/post/michigan-getting-more-federal-money-cleanup-brownfield-sites <p>Michigan is getting about $1.5 million from the federal government to help with the continued cleanup of polluted former industrial sites.</p><p></p><p>The grant money will fund brownfield assessments, job training and cleanup of sites in Genesee County and southeast Michigan.&nbsp;</p><p></p><p>“By redeveloping these sites, cleaning them up and redeveloping them…we’re essentially contributing economic activity to these communities,” Susan Hedman, the region 5 EPA administrator, said at a news conference in Flint, “Creating jobs….and transforming communities.”</p><p></p> Thu, 22 Aug 2013 19:56:41 +0000 Steve Carmody 14110 at http://michiganradio.org Michigan getting more federal money to cleanup brownfield sites