lake michigan http://michiganradio.org en No more oil in latest survey of BP oil spill in Lake Michigan http://michiganradio.org/post/no-more-oil-latest-survey-bp-oil-spill-lake-michigan <p>The Coast Guard says crews didn't find any more oil during the latest search of the Lake Michigan shore following last week's spill at BP's northwestern Indiana refinery.</p><p>Last Monday, BP's oil refinery in Whiting, Indiana south of Chicago spilled crude oil into Lake Michigan. The company estimates the spill to be somewhere between 630 and 1,638 gallons. The oil made its way into the lake through a malfunction in the refinery's cooling system.&nbsp;</p> Mon, 31 Mar 2014 16:44:45 +0000 Mark Brush 17037 at http://michiganradio.org No more oil in latest survey of BP oil spill in Lake Michigan Developer gets OK for road across Michigan dunes http://michiganradio.org/post/developer-gets-ok-road-across-michigan-dunes <div><p>SAUGATUCK&nbsp;TOWNSHIP,&nbsp;Mich. (AP) - Construction is expected to begin in the coming months on an access road across part of the Lake Michigan shoreline for 18 home sites.</p><p>The Grand Rapids Press reports&nbsp;that Singapore Dunes LLC says it has received permission from the state Department of Environmental Quality to build the two-lane blacktop in&nbsp;Allegan&nbsp;County's&nbsp;Saugatuck&nbsp;Township.</p> Sat, 29 Mar 2014 19:14:33 +0000 The Associated Press 17030 at http://michiganradio.org Developer gets OK for road across Michigan dunes Oil spills into Lake Michigan from BP refinery in Indiana http://michiganradio.org/post/oil-spills-lake-michigan-bp-refinery-indiana <p><em><span style="line-height: 1.5;">This post was updated as we waited for an estimate on how much oil spilled into Lake Michigan from the BP refinery in Whiting, Indiana. Now that an estimate has been released, we'll continue to follow this story in other posts.</span></em></p><p><strong><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Update: Thursday, March 27, 4:39 p.m.</span></strong></p><p>BP has revised its estimate of how much oil spilled Monday. It now says 15-39 barrels leaked from the Whiting Refinery. That's<strong> </strong>about <span dir="ltr" id=":15g">630-1,638</span> gallons.</p><p>Petty Officer Jeremy Thomas is with the U.S. Coast Guard’s Marine Safety unit in Chicago.</p><p>He says a small crew has been removing the oil manually. He says the cleanup efforts are going well.</p><p>“That involves either a gloved hand or a shovel or rake or some sort of hand powered tool to remove the oil from the shoreline,” Thomas said.</p><p>Thomas says federal agencies are waiting for weather conditions to improve before assessing if there’s any heavy tar sands oil on the lake bottom.</p><p>“There’s nothing that leads us to believe that there’s any down there but we want to rule it out because of course we want to make sure the environment’s safe and healthy and clean,” Thomas said.</p><p>It’s not clear what exactly caused the spill or how long cleanup will take.</p><p><strong style="line-height: 1.5;">Update: Tuesday, March 26,</strong><strong>&nbsp;7:21 p.m.</strong></p><p>BP released a statement about an hour ago saying they are still estimating the amount of oil that was spilled and assessing whether more work will need to be done. From their statement:</p><blockquote><p><span style="line-height: normal; font-family: arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px;">Crews have recovered the vast majority of oil that had been visible on the surface of a cove-like area of Lake Michigan and on the shoreline between the refinery and a nearby steel mill. They have used vacuum trucks and absorbent boom to contain and clean up the surface oil. Responders also manually collected oil that had reached the shore.</span></p><p style="line-height: normal; font-family: arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px;">Monitoring continues in coordination with the U.S. Coast Guard, EPA and the Indiana Department of Environmental Management.&nbsp;</p></blockquote><p><strong style="line-height: 1.5;">Update: Tuesday, March 26,</strong><strong>&nbsp;4:37 p.m.</strong></p><p>Michigan Radio's Cynthia Canty&nbsp;spoke with Chicago Tribune environmental reporter Michael Hawthorne this afternoon about the spill.&nbsp;<span style="line-height: 1.5;">You can listen to the full interview <a href="http://michiganradio.org/post/update-lake-michigan-oil-spill">here</a>.</span></p><p>Hawthorne told us about the history of the Whiting refinery. It's one of the oldest refineries in the country.</p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">"We don't know yet just how much oil was released from the refinery into Lake Michigan a couple of days ago. Some people were suggesting, at least off the record from the company, were suggesting that it was about 10 barrels - 12 barrels, not a lot in relative terms," said Hawthorne.</span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">"And given the amount of pollution that's already going into the lake from that part of northwest Indiana, how much affect it had on the lake, at least in the eyes of environmental regulators is fairly minimal."</span></p><p> Thu, 27 Mar 2014 20:39:36 +0000 Mark Brush & Lindsey Smith 16970 at http://michiganradio.org Oil spills into Lake Michigan from BP refinery in Indiana An update on Lake Michigan oil spill http://michiganradio.org/post/update-lake-michigan-oil-spill <p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">An oil spill from a BP refinery in Whiting, Ind., this week has raised new worries about the stepped-up processing of Canadian tar sands – and threats to Lake Michigan.</span></p><p>Considering that seven million people in Chicagoland depend on Lake Michigan for drinking water, even a little spill might be cause for concern.</p><p>Exactly what was spilled? How far did it spread? And has BP contained the leak?</p><p>We're joined now by Michael Hawthorne, a reporter with <em>The Chicago Tribune</em>.</p><p><em>Listen to the full interview above.</em></p><p> Wed, 26 Mar 2014 18:29:49 +0000 Stateside Staff 16980 at http://michiganradio.org An update on Lake Michigan oil spill Archeologists Diverge On Discovery In Lake Michigan http://michiganradio.org/post/archeologists-diverge-discovery-lake-michigan Archeologists studying a wooden beam pulled from northern Lake Michigan this summer can't say whether it is a piece of the first European ship to sail the upper Great Lakes or a post from an old fishing net. Tue, 25 Feb 2014 14:50:57 +0000 Peter Payette 16593 at http://michiganradio.org Archeologists Diverge On Discovery In Lake Michigan Incentive OK'd for filming in southwest Michigan http://michiganradio.org/post/incentive-okd-filming-southwest-michigan <p>NEW BUFFALO – A movie filming in southwestern Michigan has been approved for a state incentive.</p><p></p><p></p> Sun, 23 Feb 2014 22:53:31 +0000 Associated Press 16567 at http://michiganradio.org Incentive OK'd for filming in southwest Michigan Legislators back Lake Michigan barge proposal http://michiganradio.org/post/legislators-back-lake-michigan-barge-proposal <p>MUSKEGON, Mich. (AP) - Supporters of allowing cargo barges to travel on Lake Michigan as far north as Muskegon say they've lined up significant backing from members of the state legislature.<br /><br />The Michigan Agri-Business Association says 86 House members and eight senators have signed letters favoring the idea.<br /><br />Rep. Marcia Hovey-Wright says allowing barges to call at ports in Muskegon and elsewhere along the lake's eastern shore would give those areas a better shot at economic growth opportunities. Sen. Goeff Hansen says it would lead to infrastructure improvements. Sun, 23 Feb 2014 18:51:00 +0000 The Associated Press 16565 at http://michiganradio.org Legislators back Lake Michigan barge proposal The solution to the Asian carp problem? 'Dam it,' say many at public hearing in Ann Arbor http://michiganradio.org/post/solution-asian-carp-problem-dam-it-say-many-public-hearing-ann-arbor <p>About a hundred people showed up at a public hearing Tuesday night in Ann Arbor to discuss ways to keep Asian carp from getting into the Great Lakes.</p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">One by one, people took to the microphone to tell the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers the only way to stop the Asian carp is to close the man-made waterways connecting the Great Lakes to the Mississippi River basin.</span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Asian carp have devastated native fish populations in parts of the Mississippi River basin since first being introduced in the southern United States. Some species of Asian carp were brought in to help keep retention ponds clean in aquaculture and wastewater treatment facilities.</span></p><p> Wed, 22 Jan 2014 15:00:26 +0000 Steve Carmody 16126 at http://michiganradio.org The solution to the Asian carp problem? 'Dam it,' say many at public hearing in Ann Arbor Watch: Thousands of ice balls fill shores of Lake Michigan http://michiganradio.org/post/watch-thousands-ice-balls-fill-shores-lake-michigan <p>While temperatures are (finally) starting to climb out of subzeros across Michigan, signs of the so-called polar vortex –&nbsp;<span style="line-height: 1.5;">a low-pressure system that brought arctic temperatures across the country – are still lingering throughout the state.</span></p><p>For instance, boulder-sized ice balls have taken hold of the shores of Lake Michigan. Here’s a video captured on the lake’s coast in Glen Arbor, Michigan:</p><p><a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iupm6VHKoQU">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iupm6VHKoQU</a></p><p>As MLive’s <a href="http://www.mlive.com/news/grand-rapids/index.ssf/2014/01/lake_michigan_ice_boulders_cov.html">Heidi Fenton reported</a>, the chunks form when large ice sheets break off into smaller pieces of ice. When waves hit the ice sheets, the ice chunks form into perfectly round, frigid spheres, with some estimated to weigh about 75 pounds.</p><p>If temperatures stay low enough, the ice balls – which our webmaster claims look exactly like chocolate truffles he has at home – may continue to grow, AccuWeather.com reported:</p><blockquote><p>"It's possible that the ice is accreting like a snowball or like a hailstone, and that they keep growing," said AccuWeather.com Meteorologist Jim Andrews.</p></blockquote><p> Fri, 10 Jan 2014 16:49:05 +0000 Michigan Radio Newsroom 15970 at http://michiganradio.org Watch: Thousands of ice balls fill shores of Lake Michigan Why are Great Lakes birds dying from botulism? http://michiganradio.org/post/why-are-great-lakes-birds-dying-botulism <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Imagine walking down a picturesque beach along Lake Michigan, and stumbling upon the carcasses of dead birds. That’s a very real and unpleasant problem along Lakes Michigan, Huron, Ontario and Erie. (It’s not as big of an issue in Lake Superior because of the lake’s colder water temperatures.)</span></p><p>Loons and other deep-diving birds are suffering from a disease called avian botulism. It’s form of food poisoning that kills wild birds in the Great Lakes ecosystem.</p> Tue, 17 Dec 2013 12:58:00 +0000 Kyle Norris 15717 at http://michiganradio.org Why are Great Lakes birds dying from botulism? Study finds food supplies drop in Lakes Huron, Michigan http://michiganradio.org/post/study-finds-food-supplies-drop-lakes-huron-michigan <p>TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. (AP) — Food supplies for fish and other organisms are declining in some areas of the Great Lakes, particularly Lakes Huron and Michigan, according to a <a href="http://bioscience.oxfordjournals.org/content/early/2013/12/05/biosci.bit001.abstract">newly released scientific report</a>.</p> Sun, 15 Dec 2013 15:38:13 +0000 The Associated Press 15695 at http://michiganradio.org Study finds food supplies drop in Lakes Huron, Michigan The surprising history of one of Michigan's small island communities http://michiganradio.org/post/surprising-history-one-michigans-small-island-communities <p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">We turn now to a little-known and absolutely fascinating slice of Michigan history: Beaver Island.</span></p><p>It's a fairly remote island, plunked right there in the middle of northern Lake Michigan. Take a ferry northwest from Charlevoix, and you're there.</p><p>Fewer than 500 people live on Beaver Island year-round. A lot of them are descendants from Irish fishermen who fled the famine and troubles in 19th-century Ireland, and wound up on Beaver Island.</p><p>That's part of the fascinating history of Beaver Island. Later, years after settlement, one Mormon on the island proclaimed himself "King" of Beaver Island!</p><p>But how did Irish emigrants find their way to this island in Lake Michigan? And who was the island’s self-proclaimed king?</p><p><em>Listen to the full interview above.</em></p><p> Thu, 12 Dec 2013 20:39:49 +0000 Stateside Staff 15660 at http://michiganradio.org The surprising history of one of Michigan's small island communities Non-profit buys an island in Lake Michigan – ‘a wild, beautiful spot’ for migrating birds http://michiganradio.org/post/non-profit-buys-island-lake-michigan-wild-beautiful-spot-migrating-birds <p>The Nature Conservancy has purchased an uninhabited island in northern Lake Michigan that provides a crucial stopover spot for migratory birds.</p><p>St. Martin Island is part of a chain that runs between Wisconsin's Door Peninsula and Michigan's Garden Peninsula.</p><p>Millions of sparrows, warblers and other birds stop on the chain to take a break and feed before continuing their migration. According to a <a href="http://www.nature.org/ourinitiatives/regions/northamerica/unitedstates/michigan/newsroom/tnc-protects-lake-michigan-island.xml">release issued by the group today</a>:</p> Wed, 27 Nov 2013 21:31:46 +0000 Lindsey Smith 15465 at http://michiganradio.org Non-profit buys an island in Lake Michigan – ‘a wild, beautiful spot’ for migrating birds Report: Measure Great Lakes cleanup progress http://michiganradio.org/post/report-measure-great-lakes-cleanup-progress <p>TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. (AP) - A government report says the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency should do more to make sure a Great Lakes cleanup program is meeting its goals.<br /><br />Congress has spent about $1.3 billion on the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative over the past four years. It has funded 1,700 grants for on-the-ground projects and scientific research. It focuses on persistent environmental threats such as invasive species, loss of wildlife habitat, toxic pollution and runaway algae growth.<br /> Sat, 09 Nov 2013 17:32:00 +0000 The Associated Press 15205 at http://michiganradio.org Report: Measure Great Lakes cleanup progress 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 Deal sought to end ship's coal ash dumping by 2015 http://michiganradio.org/post/deal-sought-end-ships-coal-ash-dumping-2015 <p>LUDINGTON, Mich. (AP) - Federal officials want to enter into a revised consent agreement with a car ferry operator that would stop the nation's last coal-fired ferryboat from dumping waste ash into Lake Michigan before the 2015 sailing season.<br><br>The Ludington Daily News reports that the Environmental Protection Agency and the Justice Department filed a motion Friday to enter into the revised deal with Lake Michigan Carferry, operator of the S.S. Badger.<br> Sat, 14 Sep 2013 15:12:00 +0000 The Associated Press 14424 at http://michiganradio.org Deal sought to end ship's coal ash dumping by 2015 Study finds 32 different drugs in Lake Michigan http://michiganradio.org/post/study-finds-32-different-drugs-lake-michigan <p>We excrete these drugs or dump them down the drain, and they find their way into our water.</p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Pharmaceuticals and personal care products (</span>PPCPs<span style="line-height: 1.5;">) in rivers and lakes <a href="http://michiganradio.org/post/study-chemical-anti-bacterial-soap-turning-freshwater-lakes">have been documented before</a>, but this research finds levels in Lake Michigan that could have deleterious effects on the ecosystem.</span></p><p>Thirty-two different drugs were found - 14 of them were found at levels "of medium or high ecological risk."</p><p>The study was published in the journal <a href="http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0045653513010412">Chemosphere</a>:</p><blockquote><p><span style="color: rgb(46, 46, 46); font-family: 'Arial Unicode MS', 'Arial Unicode', Arial, 'URW Gothic L', Helvetica, Tahoma, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 20px; text-align: justify; word-spacing: -1px;">The environmental risk of </span>PPCPs<span style="color: rgb(46, 46, 46); font-family: 'Arial Unicode MS', 'Arial Unicode', Arial, 'URW Gothic L', Helvetica, Tahoma, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 20px; text-align: justify; word-spacing: -1px;"> in large lake systems, such as the Great Lakes, has been questioned due to high dilution; however, the concentrations found in this study, and their corresponding risk quotient, indicate a significant threat by </span>PPCPs<span style="color: rgb(46, 46, 46); font-family: 'Arial Unicode MS', 'Arial Unicode', Arial, 'URW Gothic L', Helvetica, Tahoma, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; line-height: 20px; text-align: justify; word-spacing: -1px;"> to the health of the Great Lakes, particularly near shore organisms.</span></p></blockquote><p>Brian Bienkowski wrote about the study for <a href="http://www.environmentalhealthnews.org/ehs/news/2013/drugs-in-lake-michigan">Environmental Health News</a>. Of the 14 chemicals found in concentrations of concern, Bienkowski&nbsp;writes triclosan has been studied the most.</p><blockquote><p style="margin-right: 5px; margin-bottom: 5px; margin-left: 5px; padding-bottom: 10px; font-family: Arial, Helvetica; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal;">...it has proven acutely&nbsp;<a href="http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15746894">toxic to algae</a>&nbsp;and can act as a&nbsp;<a href="http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20821571">hormone disruptor in fish</a>.</p><p style="margin-right: 5px; margin-bottom: 5px; margin-left: 5px; padding-bottom: 10px; font-family: Arial, Helvetica; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal;">“You’re not going to see fish die-offs [from pharmaceuticals] but subtle changes in how the fish eat and socialize that can have a big impact down the road,” said Kolpin, who did not participate in the study. “With behavior changes and endocrine disruption, reproduction and survival problems may not rear their ugly head for generations.”</p></blockquote><p style="margin-right: 5px; margin-bottom: 5px; margin-left: 5px; padding-bottom: 10px; font-family: Arial, Helvetica; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal;">The four most commonly found drugs were:</p><p> Fri, 06 Sep 2013 20:59:56 +0000 Mark Brush 14316 at http://michiganradio.org Study finds 32 different drugs in Lake Michigan Green Bay is developing a large 'dead zone' http://michiganradio.org/post/green-bay-developing-large-dead-zone <p>Lake Michigan’s Green Bay is developing dead zones similar to those found in Lake Erie and the Gulf of Mexico. In these zones, the oxygen content in the water is so low, virtually no fish, insects, or worms can survive.</p><p>According to a report by the Associated Press, in a public webinar on Thursday scientists said the dead zone may cover as much as 40% of the Bay. Tracy Valenta, a water resources specialist for the Green Bay Metropolitan Sewerage District, said that the zone starts approximately eight miles northeast of the city and may extend more than 30 miles.</p> Fri, 16 Aug 2013 20:01:11 +0000 Michigan Radio Newsroom 14031 at http://michiganradio.org Green Bay is developing a large 'dead zone' Michigan has one of world's few 'dark sky parks' for stargazers http://michiganradio.org/post/michigan-has-one-worlds-few-dark-sky-parks-stargazers <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">If you live in the city or the suburbs and you travel to the country, the first thing that often strikes you after the sun goes down is the incredible show in the night skies.</span></p><p>The difference between what city-dwellers see each night, and the same sky when you're on the shore of Lake Michigan in Emmett County is unbelievable.</p><p>That's the magic behind the Headlands International Dark Sky Park, a 600 acre park along the shore of Lake Michigan near Mackinaw City.</p><p>It's one of only 10 designated dark sky parks in the world.</p><p>Mary Stewart Adams, the program director at the <a href="http://www.emmetcounty.org/darkskypark/">Headlands International Dark Sky Park</a>, joined us from Emmett County.</p><p> Tue, 06 Aug 2013 21:30:32 +0000 Stateside Staff 13854 at http://michiganradio.org Michigan has one of world's few 'dark sky parks' for stargazers Why is Michigan so humid? Boring? Poor? - Google searches reveal popular questions http://michiganradio.org/post/why-michigan-so-humid-boring-poor-google-searches-reveal-popular-questions <p>Want to know more about what the masses think of your region? A Google search could reveal predominant stereotypes of your area.</p><p>If you're not already familiar with it, Google’s <a href="http://support.google.com/customsearch/bin/answer.py?hl=en&amp;answer=2631081">autocomplete </a>function makes search suggestions as you type in a search term.</p> Tue, 16 Jul 2013 17:08:00 +0000 Michigan Radio Newsroom 13553 at http://michiganradio.org Why is Michigan so humid? Boring? Poor? - Google searches reveal popular questions