Issues of the Environment

Wednesdays during Morning Edition

Find Issues of the Environment each week on 89.1 WEMU.

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Podcasts

  • Wednesday, July 16, 2014 9:09am

    Meet the Gold family from Superior Township. They've turned their land into an innovative,  self-sustaining property. 

      Overview   

    The Gold family owns and operates a farming “homestead” in Washtenaw County known as “Our Handmade Life”, where they live a self-sustaining, green life and they offer courses to the public on how they do it.

    The farm, on Vreeland Road, features a bio-intensive passive greenhouse (no fossil fuels!), the Michigan Folk School, dozens of varieties of organic produce, mushrooms, goats, and chickens.

    Jason and Julia Gold have operated “Our Handmade Life” since 2011, and both the farm and the school have expanded every year since. They are currently offering classes on chicken butchering, earth ovens, soap making, fermentation, ale brewing, and much more.

  • Wednesday, July 9, 2014 9:56am

    Boaters Can Take Responsibility for Mitigation of Environmental Harm

  • Wednesday, July 2, 2014 11:33am

    Overview

  • Wednesday, June 11, 2014 8:30am

    Deer overpopulation in Ann Arbor and Washtenaw County is responsible for increasing home and vehicle property damage and is threatening the area's ecological balance.

    This week, David Fair talks with Maurita Holland about the issues creating the problem and the potential solutions.

  • Wednesday, June 4, 2014 8:30am

    Thousands have taken to the City of Ann Arbor's expanded composting program. It now allows residents to add all food scraps to their composting carts, and keeps the material out of landfills, benefiting the environment and, ultimately, the budget. WEMU's David Fair discusses the early successes of the program with Ann Arbor Solid Waste Coordinator, Tom McMurtrie
     

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Environment
9:54 am
Wed November 6, 2013

Issues of the Environment: Water and Sewer Issues in Ann Arbor and Washtenaw County

The Barton Dam on the Huron River
Credit Credit James Marvin Phelps / Foter / CC BY-NC

In this week's edition of WEMU's "Issues of the Environment", David Fair talks with Washtenaw County Water Resources Commissioner, Evan Pratt. 

This interview is a follow-up to an earlier conversation with Jennifer Lawson, Water Quality Manager for Ann Arbor, that followed the large sewage spill into the Huron River in June or 2013. Evan will address the fact that several spills have occurred since then and talk about projects that Washtenaw County is working on to update the water treatment system.

Overview

  • There have been at least four breaches of the water treatment system in Ann Arbor since this summer.
  • These spill have prompted concerns that Washtenaw County’s aging water treatment network and sewage system may not be robust enough to handle the demands of today’s residents.

Listen to "Issues of the Environment" with David Fair and Washtenaw County Water Resources Commissioner Evan Pratt below.

Issues of the Environment for 11/06/2013

Environment
1:07 pm
Wed October 30, 2013

Issues of the Environment: Solar Energy in Ypsilanti

A solar installation at The Corner Brewery
Credit Solar Ypsi

Ypsilanti continues to push forward with a goal of becoming a solar destination. 

What began as a grassroots effort in 2005, has progressed to the point where the Ypsilanti City Council has passed a resolution establishing a goal of having one-thousand solar roofs in the city by the year 2020. 
Our guest this week is Dave Strenski.

He launched Solar Ypsi back in 2005, and you can see the grassroots efforts successes at a variety of locations around the city.

Issues of the Environment: Solar Ypsi 10/30/13

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Environment
10:21 am
Wed October 23, 2013

Issues of the Environment: The Asian Stink Bug Heads For Washtenaw County

Brown Marmorated Stink Bug
Credit Michigan State University Integrated Pest Management

The "Brown Marmorated Stink Bug" is already in 36 states and in the District of Columbia. So far, it has made its way to 12-counties in the State of Michigan. 

In 2010, in the Mid-Atlantic Region the bugs caused some 40-million dollars worth of crop and economic damage. And, be rest assured, you don't want these bugs to invade your home. It's name should tell you all you need to know about that! What can be done?

Listen to WEMU's David Fair explore the issues with Dr. Jamin Eisenbach.  He is an Entomologist and Professor in Eastern Michigan University's Department of Biology.

IOE for 10/23/2013

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issues of the environment
2:45 pm
Fri October 11, 2013

Issues of the Environment: March Against Monsanto

This Saturday, Ann Arbor will again be host to a "March Against Monsanto."  The local march is part of a global effort to bring awareness to the potential environmental and health problems genetically modified organisms create, and to some of the suspect practices of the company.

 

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Environment
10:11 am
Wed October 2, 2013

Issues of the Environment: LED Lighting in Ypsilanti

Credit meltedplastic / Foter / CC BY-NC-ND

The City of Ypsilanti is getting rid of it's old mercury-vapor streetlights in favor of new and more energy-efficient LED models. 

In this week's installment of Issues of the environment, WEMU's David Fair talks with Ypsilanti Mayor Paul Schreiber about the financial and environmental impacts of the switch.

Issues of the Environment: 10/2/13

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Environment
7:24 am
Fri September 27, 2013

Issues of the Environment: Legislative Agenda with State Senator Rebekah Warren

State Senator Rebekah Warren (D)-Ann Arbor
Credit Mike Andaloro / WEMU

As we move toward the end of the calendar year, we started to wonder what, if any, environmental bills would move through the legislature. In this week's installment of "Issues of the Environment", WEMU's David Fair talks with State Senator Rebekah Warren, (D)- Ann Arbor, about some of the pressing issues being considered in Lansing.

Issues of the Environment w/ State Senator Rebekah Warren. 9/25/13

Environment
8:33 am
Wed September 11, 2013

Issues of the Environment: Right-to-Know Pesticide Legislation

Would you be surprised to know that pesticides are being sprayed around you and your neighborhood? Michigan residents could soon be notified when pesticides have been applied near their properties with new right-to-know legislation.  

In this week's installment of Issues of the Environment, WEMU's David Fair talks with Ann Arbor State Representative Jeff Irwin about House Bill 4841. 

The 53rd District Democrat seeks to pass into law a measure that would give all residents of Michigan the opportunity to register with the State of Michigan, and be notified when pesticides are being used near their property. Right-to-Know pesticide legislation is the focus on this installment of WEMU's weekly feature, Issues of the Environment.

Issues of the Environment for 9/11/13

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Environment
10:10 am
Fri September 6, 2013

Issues of the Environment: Local Foods and the Homegrown Festival

Credit http://homegrownfestival.org/

The local foods movement continues to grow throughout the country, and it is becoming particularly prevalent in Washtenaw County. This weekend, Ann Arbor's 6th annual Homegrown Festival will take place at the site of the Farmers market in Kerrytown.

David Fair sits down to talk with the Co-Chair of the Planning Committee of the Homegrown Festival, Jason Frenzel.

Our guest this week is Jason Frenzel. Jason is Co-Chair of the Planning Committee of the Homegrown Festival, and also serves as  stewardship coordinator at the Huron River Watershed Council. 

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Environment
8:32 am
Wed August 28, 2013

Issues of the Environment: Ann Arbor's Bike Sharing Program

Issues of the Environment is a feature produced weekly, and heard exclusively during Morning Edition on 89.1 WEMU.

In this week's installment WEMU's David Fair talks with  Heather Seyfarth, Program Supervisor for the Clean Energy Coalition. The Coalition has partnered with the City of Ann Arbor, The University of Michigan and the Ann Arbor Area Transportation Authority to create a large-scale bike sharing program in Ann Arbor. Next spring, there will be 14- bike-sharing stations, and 125-bikes available to members of the public.

Issues of the Environment for 8/28/2013

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Environment
9:04 am
Wed August 21, 2013

Issues of the Environment: Butterfly Species in Washtenaw County

Today, we'll  focuses on butterfly species in Washtenaw County. There are more than you might think, and these delicate creatures can be a good indicator as to the health of the local environment.

IOE 08/21/2013

This week's guest is John Swales,  the North American Butterfly Association  population survey coordinator for Washtenaw County and U-M Professor Emeritus of Linguistics. We'll be discussing his long-standing participation with the NABA butterfly counts, and what the surveys tell us about the status of different butterfly species in Washtenaw County. 

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Environment
9:41 am
Wed August 14, 2013

Issues of the Environment: Ann Arbor Trees and City Policy

Credit pigliapost / Foter / CC BY-SA

To many, Ann Arbor is Tree Town.  In this week's installment of Issues of the Environment, we will explore the current health status of Ann Arbor's tree population and the city policies aimed at maintaining its lush canopy. 

David's guest this week is Lynn Borset. Lynn is a founding member of the citizens group, The Ann Arbor Tree Conservancy.  The group is pushing Ann Arbor officials to make a stronger budgetary and policy commitment to the city's trees.

Issues of the Environment 8/14/13

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Environment
8:46 am
Wed August 7, 2013

Issues of the Environment: Urban Farming in Ypsilanti

Credit Growing Hope/Facebok

The City of Ypsilanti continues to explore how best to incorporate urban farming into it's vision for the future. 

In this week's installment of  WEMU's  Issues of the Environment David Fair talks with Amanda Edmonds. Amanda is the executive Director of Ypsilanti-based, Growing Hope.

WEMU's weekly Morning Edition feature, Issues of the Environment. In this installment David Fair talks with "Growing Hope" Executive Director Amanda Edmonds about urban farming in Ypsilanti.

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Environment
12:02 pm
Wed July 31, 2013

Issues of the Environment: Stormwater and Sewer Infrastructure in Ann Arbor

The Barton Dam on the Huron River
Credit James Marvin Phelps / Foter / CC BY-NC

In this week's installment of WEMU's Issues of the Environment,  we explore the June 27th incident in which 10-thousand gallons of untreated waste water were discharged into the Huron River. 

WEMU's David Fair talks with Earl Kenzie and Jennifer Lawson. Earl is Plant Manager for the Ann Arbor Waste Water Treatment Services Unit and Jennifer is  the city's Water Quality Manager.

Issues of the Environment Report: Stormwater and Sewer Infrastructure in Ann Arbor

Environment
8:43 am
Wed July 24, 2013

Issues of the Environment: Tracking Cattle From Birth To Dinner Plate

Credit Damian Gadal / Foter / CC BY

What would be the benefit of electronically tracking our beef supply from the birth of a calf to its arrival on our dinner plate? 

Potentially, the benefits are numerous. In this week's installment of  WEMU's Issues of the Environment,  Morning Edition host David Fair talks with Dr. Dan Buskirk.

Dr. Buskirk is Associate Professor and Beef Extension Specialist with the Department of Animal Sciences at Michigan State University. 

He contends that the electronic tracking can help facilitate creation of regional food systems, better connect consumers to farmers and increase revenues for local, small and mid-sized farmers.

Issues of the Environment for 7/24/13

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Environment
7:58 am
Fri July 5, 2013

First Friday Focus on the Environment: Great Lakes

Great Lakes in Sunglint
Credit NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center / Foter / CC BY-NC

On the first Friday of every month, WEMU Morning Edition host David Fair is joined in-studio by Michigan League of Conservation Voters Executive Director Lisa Wozniak. together they bring in the experts that can speak to issues of environmental importance. In this month's installment, the guest is Jon Allen. Jon heads up the Michigan Department of environmental Quality's Office of the Great Lakes.

July's installment of WEMU's 1st Friday Focus on the Environment.

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Environment
8:28 am
Wed July 3, 2013

Issues of the Environment: Lyme Disease

Lyme disease is an illness caused by a spirochete bacterium (Borrelia burgdorferi). This disease is transmitted to people and animals primarily by the bite of the tick, Ixodes scapularis.

Two Washtenaw County residents have contracted Lyme disease so far this year. Issues of the Environment explores how to avoid contracting the affliction.

 It is peak season for the ticks that carry Lyme Disease. In this week's installment of Issues of the Environment, WEMU's David Fair talks with Erik Foster. Erick is Medical Entomologist with the Michigan Department of Community Health's communicable Disease Division. They discuss how to protect yourself from contracting Lyme Disease, what to look for if you suspect you've come in contact with an infected Tick, and how climate change may increase the areas where the ticks are found.

Environment
8:58 am
Fri June 28, 2013

Issues of the Environment: Pall Life Sciences Remediation

Remediation continues on Dioxane Plume that spread from the former Gelman Sciences property in Scio Township. Now, current property owners Pall Life Sciences is leaving, but there is still a great deal of remediation work to be done.

Pall Life Sciences is  leaving the Ann Arbor area this summer, prompting many to become concerned about the company's commitment to ongoing remediation of 1-4, Dioxane contamination. 

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Environment
8:02 am
Fri June 7, 2013

First Friday Focus on the Environment: The Great Lakes and Michigan Waterways

  On the first Friday of every month, WEMU sets aside 20-minutes to thoroughly discuss an issue of environmental importance.  WEMU's David Fair and Michigan League of Conservation Voters Executive Director co-host the segment, and this week the guest is Ann Arbor's own Lana Pollack. Lana has served as State Senator, President of the Michigan environmental Council and is currently the U-S Chair of the International Joint Commission, as appointed by President Barack Obama.

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Environment
11:59 am
Wed June 5, 2013

Issues of the Environment: The Greening of Ann Arbors Municipal Golf Courses

Leslie Park Golf Couse is owned and operated by the City of Ann Arbor
Credit a2gov.org

In this week's installment of "Issues of the Environment", WEMU's David Fair talks with Scott Spooner about the the environmental initiatives underway at the public golf courses in Ann Arbor. Mr. Spooner is the Superintendent of Golf Courses for the City of Ann Arbor.

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Environment
9:07 am
Wed May 29, 2013

Issues of the Environment: Ann Arbor's PACE Program

Credit a2energy.org

In this week's installment of "Issues of the Environment" WEMU's David Fair talks with the Clean Energy Coalition's Rebecca Filbey. Rebecca is the Program Supervisor for the City of Ann Arbor's Property Assessed Clean Energy, or PACE program

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Environment
9:57 am
Wed May 22, 2013

Issues of the Environment: Prescribed Ecological Burns

a2gov.org/nap

In this week's installment of Issues of the Environment, WEMU's David Fair explores the importance of prescribed ecological burns in our area parks. The guest this week is David Borneman. David is Natural Areas Preservation Manager for the City of Ann Arbor. 

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Environment
8:47 am
Wed May 15, 2013

Issues of the Environment: Using Technology to Protect Birds at Wind Farms

In this week's installment, WEMU's David Fair looks at how technology will help spare the lives of birds around windmill farms, and better map delicate ecosystems. The guest this week is Russell Conard. Russell is Co-Founder and Chief Technology Officer for the Washtenaw County start-up company Ornicept.

For more info on Ornicept's work:  ornicept.com

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Environment
9:15 am
Wed May 8, 2013

Issues of the Environment: Restoring Native Rattlesnake Habitat

An eastern massasauga rattlesnake at Matthaei Botanical Gardens.

Rattlesnakes in Washtenaw County! They're here, and they serve a purpose. Unfortunately their habitat has been threatened, but a project is underway to help. Joining WEMU's David Fair on Issues of the Environment is Steven Parrish, Steven is the Eastern Massasauga Rattlesnake Habitat Restoration Project Manager and Natural Areas Specialist at Matthaei Botanical Gardens and Nichols Arboretum.  Together, David and Steven discuss  work in Washtenaw County on the Eastern Massasauga Habitat Restoration and Education Project.

To see a  massasauga video and find other information. 

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Environment
9:10 am
Wed May 1, 2013

Issues of the Environment: Oil Pipeline in Washtenaw

Recovery of submerged oil on Morrow Lake using approved recovery methods during the Enbridge Oil Spill (6/25/2011)
Credit EPA.gov

Hidden dangers posed by underground oil pipelines could threaten the Huron River.  Laura Rubin is Executive Director of the Huron River Watershed Council, and she's our guest on this week's Issues of Environment from WEMU.

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Health and Environment
9:36 am
Wed April 24, 2013

Issues of the Environment: Where are the safe routes to school?

Grants encourage students to walk or bike to school rather than ride in a car or school bus.   First ward Ann Arbor city council member Sabra Briere is our guest this week on Issues of the Environment from WEMU.

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