‘Solar grazing’ is a way for farmers and solar companies to use land. But there are challenges

BY: - August 31, 2023

This coverage is made possible through a partnership with IPR and Grist, a nonprofit, independent media organization dedicated to telling stories of climate solutions and a just future. Along busy M-72 in Traverse City, rows of huge solar panels gleam in the sun. And in the shade underneath them … are sheep. This is “solar grazing,” where livestock […]


Column: Mich. pipeline standoff could affect water protection and Indigenous rights across the U.S.

BY: - August 31, 2023

Should states and Indigenous nations be able to influence energy projects they view as harmful or contrary to their laws and values? This question lies at the center of a heated debate over Enbridge Energy’s Line 5 pipeline, which carries oil and natural gas across Wisconsin and Michigan. Courts, regulatory agencies and political leaders are […]

Whitmer centers health, energy, economy and democracy in ‘What’s Next’ address

BY: - August 30, 2023

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on Wednesday outlined her policy priorities for the rest of the year, highlighting public health, clean energy, economic health and democracy in her “What’s Next” address prior to the Legislature returning from summer break. In January, Democrats took control of the Michigan House and Senate while retaining the governorship, holding a trifecta […]

It may have just gotten harder to protect minority communities from pollution

BY: - August 30, 2023

In recent years, some states have invested in air quality monitoring, applied extra scrutiny to permitting decisions and steered cleanup funding to minority communities that have borne the brunt of pollution for decades. Now, in the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court’s recent decision striking down race-conscious college admissions policies, state lawmakers are facing a […]

Detroit neighborhood, Hamtramck will receive federal aid to address repeated flooding

BY: - August 29, 2023

Detroit’s Jefferson Chalmers neighborhood will receive federal funding to install new sewer mains, according to a Monday announcement from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).  The neighborhood is located on the lower eastside of Detroit and has faced repeated flooding since the 1950s. According to a statement from FEMA, the new sewer mains will help […]

Federal, state regulators prod utilities to consider technology for grid upgrade

BY: - August 28, 2023

Of the many challenges confronting the nation’s aging, straining electric grid, the need for a lot of new transmission capacity is among the most pressing, experts and policymakers say. Earlier this year, the U.S. Department of Energy said the nation will need thousands of miles of new lines to better link regions to handle extreme […]

Michigan Dems rally around bills aimed at increasing access to solar energy

BY: - August 25, 2023

Democratic lawmakers stressed “simple fixes” to Michigan’s energy woes in a web conference announcing the “MI Power for All” plan on Thursday. The plan combines six bills introduced earlier this year into a package focused on increasing access to solar energy within the state. If passed, lawmakers say these bills would also help address energy […]

Court of Appeals rules against PFAS restrictions in Michigan’s drinking water

BY: - August 24, 2023

A Michigan Court of Appeals panel ruled on Tuesday in favor of the Minnesota chemical manufacturing company 3M in a setback for regulations limiting per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in the state’s drinking water. The 2-1 ruling from the three-judge panel establishes that Michigan failed to follow proper procedures when implementing its 2020 regulations of […]


Rick Haglund: Transition to electric vehicles at the heart of UAW’s tough contract demands

BY: - August 21, 2023

There’s less than a month before labor contracts between the UAW and Detroit automakers expire, and the two sides appear destined for a head-on collision. Bargaining has become unusually acrimonious as UAW President Shawn Fain is using hardball tactics not seen since firebrand Stephen Yokich led the union nearly 30 years ago. Last month, Fain […]

FEMA’s disaster relief fund is running low on cash. What happens now?

BY: - August 18, 2023

WASHINGTON — The Federal Emergency Management Agency’s disaster relief fund is in desperate need of cash, with the agency projecting at least a $4 billion deficit in the weeks ahead — even as the government responds to devastating fires in Hawaii and hurricane season continues. FEMA, however, won’t simply stop the response and recovery activities […]

Biden administration proposes $106 million for Western salmon and steelhead recovery

BY: - August 18, 2023

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is recommending sending $106 million to 16 salmon and steelhead recovery efforts in five Western states, the federal agency said Thursday. NOAA and the Department of Commerce recommended grants to state agencies with salmon protection missions, tribes and tribal partnerships in Alaska, Idaho, Oregon, Washington and California. The funding […]

Lawmakers applaud additional PFAS cleanup measures at former Wurtsmith Air Force Base

BY: - August 17, 2023

The United States Department of Defense announced on Thursday that it will be taking additional measures to expedite PFAS cleanup at the former Wurtsmith Airforce Base in Iosco County.  Undersecretary of Defense for Acquisition and Sustainment William LaPlante said the department will install groundwater treatment systems at two additional Wurtsmith sites to stop the flow […]