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, April 16, 2014 6:17am

    Michigan ranks dead last among Great Lakes states when it comes to the rate of recycling. Governor Snyder Snyder is taking the first step forward to try and change Michigan's standing. 

    In this week's installment of  Issues of  the Environment, WEMU's David Fair talks with Michigan Recycling Coalition Executive Director Kerrin O'Brian about where that first step may lead. 

  • Wednesday, April 9, 2014 4:29am

      

    Overview

    On May 6th, voters in Ann Arbor, Ypsilanti, and Ypsilanti Township will weigh in on a ballot proposal for new 0.7 mill property tax to pay for expanded public transportation services, primarily AAATA busing.

  • Wednesday, April 2, 2014 11:41am

    A Ready-Mix concrete company, McCoig Materials, is looking to open up a mine on a site north of Chelsea, between the Waterloo and Pinckney Recreation areas. The area has numerous bodies of water and natural areas that could be impacted by the move. McCoig wants to operate the mine for 22 to 30 years and remove 11 million tons of sand and gravel. 

    This week on 89.1 WEMU's Issues of the Environment, Dr. Lynn Walter, Professor Emerita of Geology at the University of Michigan, will discuss the environmental impacts of sand mining and the controversial operation proposed for Lyndon and Scio Townships.

  • Wednesday, March 26, 2014 6:27am

        

    Overview

    • The Washtenaw County Road Commission reports laying down 50% more road salt this winter than last year and using twice as much as in 2012.
    • Although thus far no ill effects from salt in Huron River watershed have been detected, road salt has a number of environmentally destructive effects impacting water, soil, wildlife, and public health, and if extreme winter weather conditions become the norm the effects could escalate.
    • Ric Lawson, Watershed Planner for the Huron River Watershed Council, implements watershed plans in Washtenaw County and monitors water quality for salt and other sediments in our waterways.


  • Wednesday, March 12, 2014 2:57am

        

    As Concerns About the Pall/Gelman Plume Linger, Rep. Jeff Irwin Pushes House Bill to Require the MDEQ to Align Contaminate Clean-up Standards with EPA Standards

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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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Environment
9:26 am
Wed April 3, 2013

Issues of the Environment: Waste Reduction at WCC

This week's Issues of the Environment from WEMU examines Washtenaw Community College's efforts to reduce, recycle, and now, compost.  Our guest is WCC's Facilities Maintenance Manager, Barry Wilkens.

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Environment
11:12 am
Wed March 27, 2013

Issues of the Environment: Fair Food Systems

Find out more about fair food systems on this week's Issues of the Environment from WEMU.  Our guest is Oran Hesterman, who discusses fair food systems in Washtenaw County, and some of the ways in which the county is working to provide equitable access to sustainable foods for all residents.

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Environment
9:45 am
Wed March 20, 2013

Issues of the Environment: Energy Efficient Vehicle Infrastructure

Plug-In Ready Michigan is a statewide plan that provides the necessary information and tools to planners, local officials, consumers, and private enterprises to prepare for an increase in plug-in electric vehicle use.

This week's Issues of the Environment from WEMU examines infrastructure needs to meet the growing demand for electric vehicles and hybrids.  Our guest is the project manager for "Plug-in Ready Michigan", Mark Rabinsky. 

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Environment
9:28 am
Wed March 13, 2013

Issues of the Environment: Solar Arrays in Ann Arbor

Credit PNNL- Creative Commons

Some controversy over large solar power arrays in northeast Ann Arbor.  Ann Arbor city council member Jane Lumm is our guest on this week's Issues of the Environment from WEMU.

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Environment
9:33 am
Wed March 6, 2013

Issues of the Environment: 'Fracking' part 2

Credit creative commons- beelaineo

This week's Issues of the Environment presents part two of our series on hydraulic fracturing,  or fracking, in Washtenaw County.  Our guest is Jim Peters, Operations Manager for Northstar Energy, and a representative for the Michigan Oil and Gas Producers Educational Foundation. 

Michigan Oil and Gas Producers Educational Foundation

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Environment
10:48 am
Wed February 27, 2013

Issues of the Environment: 'Fracking' part 1

Credit creative commons- beelaineo

On this week's Issues of the Environment from WEMU, the first of two discussions on 'fracking', or hydraulic fracturing, in Washtenaw County.  Our guest this week is John Callewaert, the Director of the Integrated Assessment Program for the University of Michigan's Graham Environmental Sustainability Institute.

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Environment
9:39 am
Wed February 20, 2013

Issues of the Environment: Winter Seed Sowing

Get a head start on your summer garden with winter seed sowing.  Master gardener Monica Milla is our guest on this week's Issues of the Environment from WEMU.

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