Column: Water stays in the pipes longer in shrinking cities — a challenge for public health

BY: , and - June 20, 2019

The geographic locations where Americans live are shifting in ways that can negatively affect the quality of their drinking water. Cities that experience long-term, persistent population decline are called shrinking cities. Although shrinking cities exist across the U.S., they are concentrated in the American Rust Belt and Northeast. Urban shrinkage can be bad for drinking […]

U.S. Senate panel OKs deadline for setting toxic chemical drinking water limit

BY: - June 19, 2019

A U.S. Senate panel on Wednesday approved a measure that would compel the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to set an expedited drinking water limit for a suite of toxic chemicals. The U.S. Senate Committee on Environmental and Public Works unanimously approved an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) that would force the EPA […]

Clark takes on PFAS, Line 5 as new environmental dept. director

BY: - June 19, 2019

One of Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s first executive orders was to change the name of the Department of Environmental Quality into the Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy (EGLE).* For EGLE director Liesl Clark, the change brings together her expertise in both energy and environmental conservation. In an exclusive interview, Michigan Advance sat down with […]

Enbridge taking steps on oil pipeline tunnel, Whitmer says state hasn’t signed off

BY: - June 17, 2019

Any progress Canadian energy company Enbridge makes on a controversial $500 million oil tunnel has not been authorized by the state and comes “at the company’s own risk,” warned Zack Pohl, spokesman for Gov. Gretchen Whitmer. That response came hours after Enbridge Energy announced Monday that it is moving forward with its planned summer rock […]

Michigan, Ohio, Ontario to cut Lake Erie phosphorus to stave off algae blooms

BY: - June 17, 2019

Michigan, Ohio and Ontario, Canada, have agreed to slash the amount of phosphorous flowing into the Western Lake Erie Basin 40% by 2025, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s office announced Friday. The target is meant to cut back on toxic algae blooms like the one that prompted a two-day tap water shutoff in 2014 for 400,000 people […]


Lavora Barnes: Trump has broken his promises on the Great Lakes

BY: - June 15, 2019

Editor’s Note: A previous version of the column may not have included Barnes’ full bio. It appears below. Next week, when Donald Trump kicks off his reelection, he will try to make his case to Michigan and the country that he deserves another four years in the Oval Office. Here’s one major problem for him: […]

Wurtsmith Air Museum

Michigan PFAS expert prods Congress to act

BY: - June 14, 2019

WASHINGTON — Thousands of hardy, toxic chemicals could be threatening the nation’s water supply, and the federal government should step in to help combat the problem, a Michigan chemicals expert told members of Congress on Thursday. Steve Sliver, executive director of Michigan’s PFAS Action Response Team, urged Congress to support a bill that would compel […]

Michigan education board approves long-debated social studies curriculum

BY: - June 12, 2019

The Michigan Board of Education voted Tuesday to approve a new social studies curriculum for the first time in more than 10 years after a long, controversial development process. The effort to develop the new standards amid cries of bias by conservative activists was so deliberate and tense that it inspired a New York Times […]

Castro releases lead proposal following trip to Flint

BY: - June 11, 2019

After his weekend trip to Flint, former U.S. Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Julián Castro has released a plan to “eliminate lead poisoning as a major public health threat.” Castro’s plan would encourage Congress to appropriate $5 billion per year over a 10-year period for lead mitigation efforts, enact a tax credit to remove […]


Column: Climate change is driving rapid shifts between high and low water levels on the Great Lakes

BY: and - June 10, 2019

The North American Great Lakes contain about one-fifth of the world’s surface fresh water. In May, new high water level records were set on Lakes Erie and Superior, and there has been widespread flooding across Lake Ontario for the second time in three years. These events coincide with persistent precipitation and severe flooding across much […]

Whitmer looks beyond Line 5 with new task force as Enbridge files suit

BY: - June 7, 2019

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has created a state task force to study other ways of delivering propane to Upper Peninsula residents without Line 5 after talks soured with Enbridge and a court battle looms. The Canadian oil company on Thursday announced plans to sue the state of Michigan amid a series of sharp-tongued statements. Whitmer wins […]

Enbridge announces lawsuit, Nessel responds: ‘We’ll see you in court’

BY: - June 6, 2019

Canadian oil company Enbridge announced Thursday that it will sue the state of Michigan in an effort to protect its development of a planned pipeline in the Straits of Mackinac. Gov. Gretchen Whitmer spokesperson Tiffany Brown said in a statement that Enbridge “walked away from the negotiating table” by doing so, and that the governor […]