environment

Daniel Mausolf / Radrick Farms Golf Course Maintenance

  Goats on a golf course!

The University of Michigan's Radrick Farms Golf Course recently turned to an environmentally safe method to clear out some problem areas near the course infested with invasive plant species such as poison ivy, buckthorn and honeysuckle. They rented ten goats from a nearby farm and let them eat away the problem.

89.1 WEMU's Lisa Barry spoke with Paul Scott, the general manager of the course, and you can hear the interview here:

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Water levels in the Great Lakes are rising from record lows. Lakes Huron and Michigan are 3 feet higher than a year ago. Here's NPR's David Schaper.

West Nile Virus
The Ecology Center / Ecocenter.org

Wet weather in Michigan this year has meant more flooding and standing water. Now, we are at the height of mosquito season which brings the threat of West Nile Virus. As bad as the illness is, some of the methods of prevention are just as dangerous. Learn more in this week's 'Issues of the Environment.'

  

Tens of thousands of people are coming from across the country to visit Ann Arbor's annual Art Fairs. And while most fair-goers are interested in seeing what sort of artwork and other items people have brought with them, there's another issue at hand once it all wraps up.

Kathmandu Is Cowed By Abandoned Cattle

Jul 10, 2015

In post-earthquake Kathmandu, it is now cows and calves that are a problem.

Stray ones that is.

Hundreds have taken over the streets, casually strolling or curled up in the middle of the road, oblivious of their traffic-aggravating role amid the cacophony of buses, trucks, motorcycles and cars trying to avoid them.

The stray bovines aren't exactly a novelty. Farmers have a habit of turning loose old or sick cows and bull calves, which have no financial value (artificial insemination is increasingly in use). The owners should be fined, but they're usually not.

Ypsilanti Community Schools / Creative Exchange Educational Solutions

Staff and community leaders will help show off the work and achievements of students at Ypsilanti Community Schools Middle School . An inter-disciplinary educational program focused on sustainability culminates on Thursday, June 11 with a Sustainability Summit. Science and Humanities teacher Cheryl Plouffe guests on this week's 'Issues of the Environment.'


It was Ralph Waldo Emerson who said "the earth laughs in flowers," which means there should be plenty of smiles and laughter next weekend when the 25th annual Ann Arbor Garden Walk is held.

flickr.com

Washtenaw County Solid Waste Program Specialist Noelle Bowman discusses where we are succeeding with food waste, and where we can improve.   


Michigan wildlife officials say they've detected chronic wasting disease among free-ranging deer in mid-Michigan. Chronic wasting disease is a contagious disease that can decimate deer herds if left unchecked.

State Farm/ Flickr

Wet basements are a problem this time of year. If you don't work to prevent water and moisture from getting in, the bills for remediation escalate quickly. In this week's 'Issues of the Environment',  Washtenaw County Water Resources Commissioner Evan Pratt offers up some tips for you. 


Michigan House Democrats

If you look at a map of the pipelines that run through the state of Michigan, it resembles a spider-web. They are everywhere, and more on planned and more are being constructed as we speak.  As we learned in 2010 when a pipeline burst and polluted portions of the Kalamazoo River system, protection of our waterways may be lacking in some areas.   

On Earth Day last month, A group of state lawmakers and the heads of some leading environmental groups publicly announced a package of legislation that aims to address pipeline safety and natural resource protections.  This week, we are talking with Ann Arbor State Representative Jeff Irwin about the Pipeline Safety Legislation that he helped introduce.

Wendy Lawrence, nationally-published freelance author from Ann Arbor, discusses how to make a home eco-friendly, green and safe for kids, and what resources are available to parents in Washtenaw County.


Cathie Pare adores water-wise gardens. She works for Santa Barbara's water conservation program, and today, she's inspecting a yard that was recently converted from grass to drought-friendly plants.

"There's a little manzanitas in here — the little baby ones," Pare says. "Those are so cute!"

The owners will get reimbursed for half the cost of materials, thanks to a city rebate program that since last July has doled out $190,000.

Pare and a team of two others also visit homes for water checkups to help homeowners program their sprinklers or improve irrigation.

Wikimedia Commons

Should Michigan's energy future include more nuclear energy? That's the topic in this week's Issues of the Environment.  Jeff Alson is a volunteer with the group, "The Alliance to Halt Fermi III."  

Listen to why that group is working to stop DTE Energy from moving forward with a another proposed nuclear generating station. 


89.1 WEMU

Michigan’s maple syrup industry is growing at a time when climate change is both shortening the sap collection season and moving northward the range of sugar maples.  But new technologies have increased efficiencies, and the recent cold winters have been great for maple sugar farmers. 

 

Things are sweet in Michigan’s Sugarbush!  In this installment of WEMU’s “The Green Room,” Barbara Lucas explores the environmental considerations of this homegrown industry.


Courtesy Huron River Watershed Council

The Huron River Watershed Council is celebrating its 50th Anniversary this year. David Fair talks with Executive Director Laura Rubin about the past, present and future of the organization in this week's 'Issues of the Environment.' 


Last week, Governor Jerry Brown made water conservation mandatory in the drought-stricken state of California. "As Californians, we have to pull together and save water in every way we can," he said.

But if the four-year drought continues, conservation alone — at least what's required by the governor's plan — won't fix the problem.

Across California, communities are examining all options to avoid running out of water. Some, like the coastal city of Santa Barbara, are looking to the past for inspiration.

Barbara Lucas / 89.1 WEMU

Oil and gas companies  are targeting Washtenaw County and buying up land leases and property mineral rights. In This week's "Issues of the Environment," David Fair talks with the President of Citizens for Oil Free Backyards, Laura Robinson. 


Tara Habeck

Are today's children spending too much time indoors and online? Might a year-round, outdoors education serve them well? Find out as The Green Room explores 'Learning Without Walls.' 


Courtesy Arbor Brewing Company

A conversation with Jarett Diamond, Director of the Green Brewery Project.  


Ford Lake in Ypsilanti Township is likely much better than its reputation. Measures have been taken to combat algae blooms, clean-up pollution and make it a destination site for water recreation. This week, we  talk to Ypsilanti Township’s Director of Residential Services Jeff Allen.

Michigan League of Conservation Voters / www.michiganlcv.org

Lisa Wozniak explores issues facing the Great Lakes in the near and long term. Her guest on 89.1 WEMU's 1st Friday Focus on the Environment is Mike Shriberg, the newly appointed Director of the National Wildlife Federation's Great Lakes Regional Center. 


David Yapp has opened a new store in downtown Ypsilanti. It's aim is get the community more involved in cycling at an affordable price, and to benefit the environment. How? find out in this week's installment of 'Issues of the Environment.'  


Barbara Lucas

To decrease its carbon footprint, the Climate Action Plan of Ann Arbor calls for increasing walking, biking and public transit.  But heavy precipitation events have increased 37% in the Midwest in the last century, and keeping pathways clear can be a challenge.  In this installment of WEMU’s “The Green Room,” we explore local attempts to make sustainable travel viable, year-round.


Glances at Nature / Audobon Guide

The number of Bald Eagles in Michigan is on the rebound, from 85 pairs in 1970 to 750 pairs today, and they can be seen in all areas of Washtenaw County. Bald Eagles were greatly endangered and facing extinction due to habitat loss, DDT (a now-banned insecticide), and hunting, but they have come back due to conservation measures.

Listen as we talk to Rachelle Roake, Conservation Science Coordinator of Michigan Audubon to discuss the comeback of bald eagles in our county, and recent University of Michigan findings that they are contaminated with flame retardants despite the phase-out of these compounds.

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