environment http://michiganradio.org en Company considers drilling for oil west of Ann Arbor http://michiganradio.org/post/company-considers-drilling-oil-west-ann-arbor <p><a href="http://www.mlive.com/news/ann-arbor/index.ssf/2014/04/michigan-based_oil_company_exp.html">Ben Freed over at The Ann Arbor News</a> has more about the plans being developed by Traverse City-based West Bay Exploration Company. Freed reports the company has approached landowners in Scio Township looking to obtain their mineral rights.</p><p>West Bay says it would drill for oil using a "traditional" method. The company's vice president, Patrick Gibson, said it wouldn't use horizontal hydraulic fracturing, or fracking:</p><blockquote><p>“We’re a conventional oil and gas exploration company, we do not utilize hydraulic fracturing,” Gibson said.</p><p>“What we’re looking for is geological formations that are already fractured so that we don’t have to do any fracturing ourselves, hydraulic or otherwise.”</p></blockquote><p>Landowners are being advised to educate themselves before signing contracts offered by the company. MSU's extension office offers insights into oil and gas leasing on this <a href="http://msue.anr.msu.edu/program/info/oil_and_gas">page</a>.</p><p> Tue, 08 Apr 2014 16:37:28 +0000 Mark Brush 17144 at http://michiganradio.org Company considers drilling for oil west of Ann Arbor U.S. Supreme Court won't review UP mining dispute http://michiganradio.org/post/us-supreme-court-wont-review-mining-dispute <p>The U.S. Supreme Court declined to take a case trying to stop the development of a new copper and nickel mine in Michigan's Upper Peninsula.</p><p>The high court let stand a lower court's rejection of the Huron Mountain Club's arguments that the mine needs federal permits.</p><p>The Club owns a 19,000-acre wildlife and nature preserve that includes an 11-mile stretch of the Salmon Trout River.</p><p>The Eagle Mine is located a few miles upstream, and some mining will take place under the river.</p> Mon, 07 Apr 2014 20:43:56 +0000 Michigan Radio Newsroom 17137 at http://michiganradio.org U.S. Supreme Court won't review UP mining dispute Poll: People worry more about the price of fueling their car than heating their home http://michiganradio.org/post/poll-people-worry-more-about-price-fueling-their-car-heating-their-home <p>People are more worried about being able to afford fuel for their cars than heating their homes. That’s the finding of a new poll by the University of Michigan.</p><p></p><p>The U of M Energy Institute asked people about their energy costs and found that most people are twice as sensitive to increasing gasoline costs than they are to rising home energy costs.</p><p></p> Sat, 22 Mar 2014 21:26:00 +0000 Steve Carmody 16937 at http://michiganradio.org Poll: People worry more about the price of fueling their car than heating their home Senators want faster action on stopping Asian carp http://michiganradio.org/post/senators-want-faster-action-stopping-asian-carp <div><p>TRAVERSE CITY –&nbsp;A group of U.S. senators wants the federal government to move faster on preventing Asian carp from reaching the Great Lakes through waterways in the Chicago area.</p><p>Eleven senators from states in the region sent a letter Tuesday to the assistant secretary of the Army, whose office oversees the Army Corps of Engineers. The letter asks a series of questions about when the Corps might begin tasks such as adding barriers at the southernmost lock in the Chicago Area Waterway System.</p><p>It also asks what authorization the Corps needs from Congress to move more quickly toward short- and long-term solutions.</p><p>The Corps issued a report in January with options for blocking the invasive carp's path to Lake Michigan, but says Congress and regional stakeholders must choose the final plan.</p> Wed, 19 Mar 2014 17:16:37 +0000 The Associated Press 16902 at http://michiganradio.org Senators want faster action on stopping Asian carp Record set for ice cover on Lake Michigan, not on Great Lakes http://michiganradio.org/post/record-set-ice-cover-lake-michigan-not-great-lakes <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">My neighbors and I officially had our last "pond hockey" game over the weekend. We moved everything off the ice as things started to melt.</span></p><div><p>So the ice in the region has reached its peak, right?&nbsp;No one thinks we're going to be hit with another prolonged polar vortex, do they?&nbsp;</p><p>Let's hope not.</p><p>With the most frigid part of this winter over, let's look at the record books for ice cover on the Great Lakes.</p><p>Here's what we know.</p> Tue, 11 Mar 2014 16:28:27 +0000 Mark Brush 16808 at http://michiganradio.org Record set for ice cover on Lake Michigan, not on Great Lakes Great Lakes ice levels approaching record set in 1979 http://michiganradio.org/post/great-lakes-ice-levels-approaching-record-set-1979 <p>The last time I posted on this (<a href="http://michiganradio.org/post/watch-time-lapse-video-ice-forming-great-lakes?nopop=1">on Feb. 26</a>), the ice levels on the Great Lakes had dropped off.</p><p>There had been a slight warm-up and some strong winds that had opened up the water.</p><p>But it's been cold since then, and the ice levels have increased on the Great Lakes.&nbsp;<span style="line-height: 1.5;">Here's a graphic showing you where the ice levels stand as of yesterday. The blue areas show the open water:</span></p><p></p> Wed, 05 Mar 2014 20:11:49 +0000 Mark Brush 16731 at http://michiganradio.org Great Lakes ice levels approaching record set in 1979 More action needed to clean up Lake Erie, says international agency http://michiganradio.org/post/more-action-needed-clean-lake-erie-says-international-agency <p>Massive algae blooms and dead zones in Lake Erie: T<span style="line-height: 1.5;">hese used to be major environmental problems around the most urbanized Great Lake back in the '</span>60s<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> and '</span>70s<span style="line-height: 1.5;">, but they are problems once again.</span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Now, an international agency that keeps an eye on the health of the Great Lakes is calling for more action.</span></p> Thu, 27 Feb 2014 17:43:42 +0000 Mark Brush 16640 at http://michiganradio.org More action needed to clean up Lake Erie, says international agency Watch a time-lapse video of the ice forming on the Great Lakes http://michiganradio.org/post/watch-time-lapse-video-ice-forming-great-lakes <p><strong>Update: March 5, 2014, 3:36 p.m.</strong></p><p>The Great Lakes are again icing up and approaching the 1979 record. See this <a href="http://michiganradio.org/post/great-lakes-ice-levels-approaching-record-set-1979">post</a>&nbsp;for more.</p><p><strong>Original post: February 26th, 2014, 11:17 a.m.</strong></p><p>This frigid winter has us watching the record books again. The record for the most amount of ice cover on the Great Lakes was set back in 1979. That's when the ice cover reached the 95% mark.</p> Wed, 26 Feb 2014 16:17:13 +0000 Mark Brush 16618 at http://michiganradio.org Watch a time-lapse video of the ice forming on the Great Lakes Health professionals trained in environmental issues also learn to share knowledge with community http://michiganradio.org/post/health-professionals-trained-environmental-issues-also-learn-share-knowledge-community <p class="p1"><span class="s1">It takes a lot of heavy lifting to become a physician, a nurse, a dietician or other health-care professional. Long years of coursework and clinical training leave little room to learn other important skills – the kind of skills that can make a health professional an important player in the public policy sphere and prepared to tackle some of our most urgent environmental health challenges.</span></p><p class="p1"><span class="s1">That's why the Ecology Center is offering a new fellowship program that can train health professionals about effective civic engagement and environmental health risks.</span></p><p class="p2"><em>Listen to the full piece above.</em></p><p> Wed, 12 Feb 2014 20:52:54 +0000 Stateside Staff 16416 at http://michiganradio.org Health professionals trained in environmental issues also learn to share knowledge with community Ice bridge to Isle Royale is complete, will new wolves cross it? http://michiganradio.org/post/ice-bridge-isle-royale-complete-will-new-wolves-cross-it <p>The last time I checked, the ice bridge to Isle Royale had not fully formed, but there's an ice bridge now.</p><p>Michigan Technological University's Rolf Peterson confirmed it in an e-mail to me last night.</p><p><em>"There's been a good ice bridge for the past 10 days."</em></p> Fri, 07 Feb 2014 20:02:14 +0000 Mark Brush 16351 at http://michiganradio.org Ice bridge to Isle Royale is complete, will new wolves cross it? Managers at Sleeping Bear Dunes want take down more diseased Beech trees http://michiganradio.org/post/managers-sleeping-bear-dunes-want-take-down-more-diseased-beech-trees <p>For a beech tree, the end comes in two parts.</p><p>It starts with the wooly beech scale opening up a wound, then a fungus gets into that wound and can eventually kill the tree (either by girdling it or by weakening it until it falls over).</p><p>The disease has been around in Canada and parts of the U.S. for more than a century. <a href="http://www.fs.fed.us/ne/newtown_square/publications/technical_reports/pdfs/2005/331papers/heyd331.pdf">It was discovered in Michigan in 2000</a>.</p> Fri, 17 Jan 2014 17:42:59 +0000 Mark Brush 16070 at http://michiganradio.org Managers at Sleeping Bear Dunes want take down more diseased Beech trees What will Gov. Snyder say about the environment in his State of the State address? http://michiganradio.org/post/what-will-gov-snyder-say-about-environment-his-state-state-address Gov. Snyder delivers his State of the State address a week from today. He'll likely talk about new policy initiatives and proposals and issues concerning everything from transportation and infrastructure to education. Lisa Wozniak, however, will be listening intently to what the Governor has to say about one specific topic: the environment.</p><p>Lisa Wozniak is the Executive Director of the Michigan League for Conservation Voters, and she joined us today.</p><p><em>Listen to the full interview above.</em></p><p> Fri, 10 Jan 2014 01:46:04 +0000 Stateside Staff 15955 at http://michiganradio.org What will Gov. Snyder say about the environment in his State of the State address? Food industry asks to label genetically engineered ingredients as 'natural' http://michiganradio.org/post/food-industry-asks-label-genetically-engineered-ingredients-natural <p>The food industry wants the government to give the okay for calling&nbsp;products using genetically engineered ingredients “natural” foods.</p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">I went to my local grocery store looking for the term <span style="line-height: 1.5;">“</span>natural<span style="line-height: 1.5;">”</span> or</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;"> <span style="line-height: 1.5;">“</span>naturally<span style="line-height: 1.5;">”</span> and I didn’t have to go very far.</span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">In the cereal aisle I</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;found products labeled “naturally flavored,” “100% natural,” and an “all natural pancake mix.”&nbsp;</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">A couple aisles over, looking at the chips there were “all natural”&nbsp;</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">pretzels, “naturally sweet” popcorn, and then there was a drink with&nbsp;</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">a label that read “naturally flavored beverage with other natural&nbsp;</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">flavors blended with vitamins.”</span></p><p> Thu, 09 Jan 2014 14:32:22 +0000 Lester Graham 15949 at http://michiganradio.org Food industry asks to label genetically engineered ingredients as 'natural' This is what it sounds like to be attacked by a turkey http://michiganradio.org/post/what-it-sounds-be-attacked-turkey <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Back in 2007, I was doing </span><a href="http://environmentreport.org/story.php?story_id=3719" style="line-height: 1.5;">a story on CAFOs</a><span style="line-height: 1.5;"> in Wood County, Ohio.</span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">I was waiting for my interviewee to return home when I spotted a gang of turkeys appear at the edge of the woods.</span></p> Wed, 27 Nov 2013 16:52:25 +0000 Mark Brush 15444 at http://michiganradio.org This is what it sounds like to be attacked by a turkey Why do we have the lowest recycling rate in the Great Lakes region? http://michiganradio.org/post/why-do-we-have-lowest-recycling-rate-great-lakes-region <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">The state’s paltry recycling numbers have caught the attention of </span>Gov<span style="line-height: 1.5;">. Rick Snyder, who’s pinpointing recycling as a top priority. The Department of Environmental Quality is trying to come up with a proposal to expand recycling in Michigan.</span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">“If we could accomplish our 50 percent recycling goal, the value of that material if diverted from the landfill is about $500 million dollars a year,” said </span>Kerrin<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> O'Brien, the executive director of the Michigan Recycling Coalition.</span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">O’Brien talked to us in the studio along with Barry Rabe, professor of Environmental Policy at the University of Michigan, where he directs the Center for Local, State and Urban Policy.</span></p><p><em>Click on the audio link above to listen to the full interview.</em></p><p> Thu, 14 Nov 2013 21:28:10 +0000 Stateside Staff 15289 at http://michiganradio.org Why do we have the lowest recycling rate in the Great Lakes region? More bike lanes in Michigan mean more cyclists http://michiganradio.org/post/more-bike-lanes-michigan-mean-more-cyclists <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">More communities in Michigan are embracing bike lanes.</span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Grand Rapids plans to add 40 more miles of bike lanes in the next few years.&nbsp;</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Detroit has an aggressive approach to implementing them and they're popping up in places like Adrian and South Haven, not to mention the biking hot spots of Traverse City and Marquette.</span></p><p>Josh DeBruyn is the <a href="http://www.michigan.gov/mdot/0,1607,7-151-9615_11223---,00.html">bike and pedestrian coordinator for MDOT.</a>&nbsp;Part of his job is to deal with the applications that towns send him when they apply for grants to help install bike lanes.</p><p>DeBruyn says he gets double to triple the amount of applicants that he can actually fulfill for these kinds of grants.</p><p>He also says he hears from plenty of people and organizations about what he calls "motor vehicle angst" - or drivers who are frustrated and sometimes aggressive with cyclists.</p><p>You can listen to my interview with him here:</p><p> Tue, 12 Nov 2013 13:30:00 +0000 Kyle Norris 15210 at http://michiganradio.org More bike lanes in Michigan mean more cyclists What fall smells like in Michigan and around the world http://michiganradio.org/post/what-fall-smells-michigan-and-around-world <p dir="ltr" style="line-height:1.15;margin-top:0pt;margin-bottom:0pt;"><span id="docs-internal-guid--32ea396-3948-014f-853b-6258c9256e1b"><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Arial; background-color: transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">Wet leaves, cider, campfire — for many Michiganders, these are the smells of fall.</span></span></p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height:1.15;margin-top:0pt;margin-bottom:0pt;"><span id="docs-internal-guid--32ea396-3948-014f-853b-6258c9256e1b"><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Arial; background-color: transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">But our friends over at WNYC’s <em>Radiolab</em> wanted to get an idea of what autumn smells like all over the world.</span></span></p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height:1.15;margin-top:0pt;margin-bottom:0pt;"><span><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Arial; background-color: transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">So with the help of Google Maps and talented olfactory nerves, the Radiolab crew is <a href="http://www.radiolab.org/crowdsourcing/smello-map/report/3/">compiling a map</a> that highlight the scent of autumn around the U.S. and beyond. </span></span></p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height:1.15;margin-top:0pt;margin-bottom:0pt;"><span id="docs-internal-guid--32ea396-3948-014f-853b-6258c9256e1b"><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Arial; background-color: transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">Here are some the responses so far from Michigan. Leaves seem to be the big winner:</span></span></p><ul style="margin-top:0pt;margin-bottom:0pt;"><li dir="ltr" style="list-style-type: disc; font-size: 15px; font-family: Arial; background-color: transparent; vertical-align: baseline;"><p dir="ltr" style="line-height:1.15;margin-top:0pt;margin-bottom:0pt;"><span id="docs-internal-guid--32ea396-3948-014f-853b-6258c9256e1b"><span style="background-color: transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">“Salt, smoke and sweet rotting apples”</span></span></p></li><li dir="ltr" style="list-style-type: disc; font-size: 15px; font-family: Arial; background-color: transparent; vertical-align: baseline;"><p dir="ltr" style="line-height:1.15;margin-top:0pt;margin-bottom:0pt;"><span id="docs-internal-guid--32ea396-3948-014f-853b-6258c9256e1b"><span style="background-color: transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">“Leaf-burning, skunks”</span></span></p></li><li dir="ltr" style="list-style-type: disc; font-size: 15px; font-family: Arial; background-color: transparent; vertical-align: baseline;"><p dir="ltr" style="line-height:1.15;margin-top:0pt;margin-bottom:0pt;"><span id="docs-internal-guid--32ea396-3948-014f-853b-6258c9256e1b"><span style="background-color: transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">“Cider spices and dead leaves”</span></span></p></li><li dir="ltr" style="list-style-type: disc; font-size: 15px; font-family: Arial; background-color: transparent; vertical-align: baseline;"><p dir="ltr" style="line-height:1.15;margin-top:0pt;margin-bottom:0pt;"><span id="docs-internal-guid--32ea396-3948-014f-853b-6258c9256e1b"><span style="background-color: transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">“Cold, crispy leaves and firepits”</span></span></p></li><li dir="ltr" style="list-style-type: disc; font-size: 15px; font-family: Arial; background-color: transparent; vertical-align: baseline;"><p dir="ltr" style="line-height:1.15;margin-top:0pt;margin-bottom:0pt;"><span id="docs-internal-guid--32ea396-3948-014f-853b-6258c9256e1b"><span style="background-color: transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">“Musky leaves”</span></span></p></li></ul><p dir="ltr" style="line-height:1.15;margin-top:0pt;margin-bottom:0pt;"><span id="docs-internal-guid--32ea396-3948-014f-853b-6258c9256e1b"><span style="font-size: 15px; font-family: Arial; background-color: transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">And the rest of the world:</span></span></p><ul style="margin-top:0pt;margin-bottom:0pt;"><li dir="ltr" style="list-style-type: disc; font-size: 15px; font-family: Arial; background-color: transparent; vertical-align: baseline;"><p dir="ltr" style="line-height:1.15;margin-top:0pt;margin-bottom:0pt;"><span id="docs-internal-guid--32ea396-3948-014f-853b-6258c9256e1b"><span style="background-color: transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">“Roasted chestnuts and sea salt” - Istanbul, Turkey</span></span></p></li><li dir="ltr" style="list-style-type: disc; font-size: 15px; font-family: Arial; background-color: transparent; vertical-align: baseline;"><p dir="ltr" style="line-height:1.15;margin-top:0pt;margin-bottom:0pt;"><span id="docs-internal-guid--32ea396-3948-014f-853b-6258c9256e1b"><span style="background-color: transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">“Roasted chestnuts, cigarette smoke, wet asphalt, diesel fumes, fresh-baked bread” - Lyon, France</span></span></p></li><li dir="ltr" style="list-style-type: disc; font-size: 15px; font-family: Arial; background-color: transparent; vertical-align: baseline;"><p dir="ltr" style="line-height:1.15;margin-top:0pt;margin-bottom:0pt;"><span id="docs-internal-guid--32ea396-3948-014f-853b-6258c9256e1b"><span style="background-color: transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">“Salt and damp seaweed” - Coronado, CA</span></span></p></li><li dir="ltr" style="list-style-type: disc; font-size: 15px; font-family: Arial; background-color: transparent; vertical-align: baseline;"><p dir="ltr" style="margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt; line-height: 1.15;"><span id="docs-internal-guid--32ea396-3948-014f-853b-6258c9256e1b"><span style="background-color: transparent; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">“Its spring here [sic]” - Melbourne, Australia</span></span></p></li></ul><p><em style="line-height: 1.5;">- Melanie Kruvelis, Michigan Radio Newsroom</em></p><p> Fri, 08 Nov 2013 20:20:11 +0000 Michigan Radio Newsroom 15200 at http://michiganradio.org What fall smells like in Michigan and around the world Will proposed regulations change fracking in Michigan? http://michiganradio.org/post/will-proposed-regulations-change-fracking-michigan <p>Michigan’s Department of Environmental Quality proposed a list of new rules for hydraulic fracturing in the state — commonly known as fracking.</p><p>Fracking is a process where developers pump high-pressure streams of water and chemicals into a well to clear a path to hard-to-reach deposits of natural gas.</p><p>So just what are these proposed new rules? And what could they mean to the future of fracking in Michigan?</p><p>James Clift is the policy director of the Michigan Environmental Council. He joins us to discuss the new regulations.</p><p><em>Listen to the full interview above.&nbsp;</em></p><p> Thu, 07 Nov 2013 21:41:00 +0000 Stateside Staff 15182 at http://michiganradio.org Will proposed regulations change fracking in Michigan? Michigan non-profit says it has cloned John Muir's giant sequoia http://michiganradio.org/post/michigan-non-profit-says-it-has-cloned-john-muirs-giant-sequoia <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Michigan-based</span><a href="http://www.ancienttreearchive.org/" style="line-height: 1.5;"> Archangel Ancient Tree Archive</a><span style="line-height: 1.5;"> announced this week that it has successfully cloned a giant sequoia tree planted by renown conservationist John Muir.</span></p><p>About 130 years ago, Muir transplanted the tree from Yosemite to his home in Martinez, California.&nbsp; Now 75 feet tall, the tree suffers from two fatal fungal diseases.</p><p>Archangel's co-founder David Milarch said a forester from the John Muir National Historic Site sent cuttings from the sick tree to Archangel.</p><p> Tue, 05 Nov 2013 20:08:28 +0000 Michigan Radio Newsroom 15139 at http://michiganradio.org Michigan non-profit says it has cloned John Muir's giant sequoia How one city in Wisconsin may change how we protect the Great Lakes http://michiganradio.org/post/how-one-city-wisconsin-may-change-how-we-protect-great-lakes <p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">A water dilemma is brewing in Wisconsin.</span></p><p>The city of Waukesha (near Milwaukee) is asking for permission to tap into Lake Michigan for drinking water — to the tune of 10.1 million gallons per day.</p><p>Waukesha is in a real bind. The aquifer that has provided most of its drinking water for the last century has dropped so far, that the water left behind has unhealthy levels of radium and salt.</p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">So the city of 70,000 is under a federal order to find a new source, a</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">nd Lake Michigan is just 15 miles away.</span></p><p>But Waukesha has the bad luck to be a mile and a half outside the watershed boundary that encircles the five Great Lakes.</p><p> Tue, 22 Oct 2013 19:57:12 +0000 Stateside Staff 14942 at http://michiganradio.org How one city in Wisconsin may change how we protect the Great Lakes