Whitmer invokes federal law to hold military site cleanups to highest PFAS standards

BY: - April 1, 2021

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced Wednesday that she is invoking a federal law to ensure the U.S. Air Force uses the strictest PFAS standards possible while cleaning up a contaminated air force base in northern Michigan, as well as all other contamination sites in the state caused by military activities. The Air Force began releasing its […]

COVID-19 vaccine could be less effective in people with high PFAS levels in blood

BY: - January 4, 2021

The COVID-19 vaccine could be less effective in people with high levels of perfluorinated compounds — PFAS — in their blood, several scientists said. High levels of PFAS exposure is known to be linked to a “plethora of adverse health effects,” including immune system disorders, said Linda Birnbaum, a toxicologist and former director of the National Institute […]

Line 5, PFAS, the Great Lakes and more: Our best environmental reporting

BY: - December 29, 2020

Quotable of the Year: “Today is a big day for our Great Lakes.” — Sean McBrearty, Michigan legislative and policy director of Clean Water Action, when Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced in November she was shutting down Line 5 It’s been a big year of news. To end 2020, the Advance is running a series of our best stories from some of […]

West Michigan has been a key GOP stronghold. That’s now being tested by two congressional races.

BY: - October 15, 2020

The 3rd and 6th congressional districts in West Michigan are, in some ways, a study in contrasts: They are a world of dense urban neighborhoods and cornfields that fill the horizon, of cars donning “Resist” and “Make America Great Again” bumper stickers, of Republican and Democratic (and occasional Libertarian and Green) political signs dotting yards […]

Workers repairing lead pipes in Flint

Whitmer’s $500M water infrastructure plan funds PFAS cleanup, sewer upgrades

BY: - October 1, 2020

Updated with comment from Whitmer’s office, 3:41 p.m., 10/1/20 Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced Thursday a landmark investment in Michigan’s notoriously underfunded water infrastructure, prompting praise from environmental groups who say the action is a much-needed step in the right direction. The $500 million investment, dubbed “MI Clean Water,” aims to improve Michigan’s water systems in […]

Beverage companies push changes to Michigan’s ‘bottle bill’ amid pandemic

BY: - August 29, 2020

Michigan’s “bottle bill” has survived for five decades, but the COVID-19 pandemic has inspired beverage industry companies to lobby for changes in who gets the profits from unredeemed deposits. The landmark 1976 law is a product of Republican former Gov. William Milliken and Michigan first lady Helen Milliken, who worked to get the initiative on […]

Michigan sues firefighting foam manufacturers over PFAS contaminants

BY: - August 21, 2020

Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel on Thursday filed two complaints against makers of PFAS-containing firefighting foam that her office says contaminated Michigan’s environment. The two lawsuits, filed in state and federal courts, follow up on a similar lawsuit Nessel filed in January against 3M, DuPont and a number of other chemical manufacturers. Nessel says toxic […]

Michigan’s 1st PFAS drinking water standards clear final hurdle

BY: - July 23, 2020

After nearly a year of rulemaking debate, Michigan’s very first set of PFAS limits for drinking water passed its last obstacle Wednesday as a panel of state lawmakers allowed them to take effect. Those rules, which establish maximum contaminant levels for seven toxic contaminants known as per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), are the strictest and […]

Dingell pans Dem-led committee for axing PFAS cleanup from defense bill

BY: - July 20, 2020

WASHINGTON — An effort to crack down on toxic chemicals has been thwarted again — this time by Democrats. U.S. Rep. Debbie Dingell — a Dearborn Democrat who has championed the issue in Congress — and other lawmakers were hoping to amend a defense authorization bill this week with a series of strong provisions to […]

Michigan lawmakers make another push to crack down on PFAS

BY: - July 1, 2020

WASHINGTON — After suffering a stinging setback last year, federal lawmakers from Michigan and other states are making another push to crack down on a widespread class of “forever chemicals” linked to cancer and other serious health problems. Several are pressing for a strong set of provisions in a defense policy bill that would address […]

Nessel, AGs call on EPA to strengthen PFAS rules

BY: - April 28, 2020

Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel has joined 17 other attorneys general in urging a federal agency to strengthen rules pertaining to per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), her office announced Tuesday. The comment letter addressed to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) calls on the agency to strengthen and expand a proposed rule about the review […]

House panel debates drinking water filters for schools, daycares

BY: - March 3, 2020

Updated, 12:57 p.m., 3/4/20 A bipartisan “filter first” bill package to ensure safe drinking water for children in schools and child care centers had a favorable reception at a state House committee Tuesday afternoon. Testing for lead in drinking water is not mandated for schools and daycares in Michigan, but a 2018 study detected PFAS […]