Michigan Department of Environmental Quaility

Huron River Watershed Council / hrwc.org

The Peninsular Paper Dam in Ypsilanti once provided hydro-electric power to the area.  Those days are long gone, and some believe it’s time remove the structure from the Huron River. This week, we explore the potential benefits of dam removal with the executive director of the Huron River Watershed Council, Laura Rubin.


Straits of Mackinac
Wikipedia Media Commons / wikipedia.org

The state of Michigan has scrapped a risk study on Enbridge’s Line 5 and fired the contractor just a week before a first draft of the report was to be released.


Money
Wikipedia Media Commons / wikipedia.org

State spending plans are moving swiftly through the legislature.  A number were voted on last week, many of them with deep cuts from what the governor asked for.  


Washtenaw County Public Health / www.ewashtenaw.org/government/departments/public_health/

Recent events in our community, like the Ann Arbor area’s 1,4-dioxane plume, have increased residents’ awareness of – and concern about – the chemicals companies use.  While many state and federal regulations may exist that govern chemical storage and manufacturing, these regulations generally do not involve an onsite inspection component.  As a result, the programs are enforced on a complaint basis or incident, after the fact.  In this week’s "Issues of the Environment," WEMU’s David Fair talks with Kristen Schweighoefer,  Environmental Health Director for Washtenaw County Public Health, about 25 years of effort to manage these issues in Washtenaw County.


School Bus
Wikipedia Media Commons / wikipedia.org

The Volkswagen emissions settlement from earlier this year could lead to new school busses for some Michigan students.


Water
US EPA / flickr.com

Some state lawmakers got an early peek at Governor Rick Snyder’s new lead rules that are supposed to be rolled out this week.  A top state environmental official shared some details in testimony before a state House budget subcommittee.

Jorge Avellan / WEMU

Yousef Rabhi, representing the 53rd District, is one of three new State House Representatives from Washtenaw County.  We sent WEMU’s Jorge Avellan to spend a day with Rabhi and report on the work he’s doing on your behalf in Lansing.


Bottled Water
Steven DePolo / flickr.com

A new audit shows a state department is not in compliance with regulations on bottled water inspections. 

Washtenaw County
jimmywayne / flickr.com

A Washtenaw County Circuit Court judge will hear a motion this morning at 9AM regarding the 1,4 Dioxane situation in our area.  


Washtenaw County Public Health
Washtenaw County / ewashtenaw.org

Washtenaw County, along with the its health department and health officer, has taken legal action on isses related to the area's 1,4 Dioxane contamination plume. 


Courtesy photo / Michigan Ttate University

It's been over a year since state officials in Michigan acknowledged Flint was in the midst of a water crisis and many of the city's children were suffering with high lead levels in their blood. Dr. Mona Hannah-Attisha brought the lead concerns to the fore and has remained an advocate for the children and safe water in Flint and around the state. She discusses where we've been and where we're going with David Fair and Michigan League of Conservation Voters executive director Lisa Wozniak . 


Jorge Avellan / 89.1 WEMU

For decades, the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality has been working with Gelman Sciences to clean-up the 1,4 Dioxane chemical the company released in certain parts of Ann Arbor.  To this day, the DEQ continues to say the levels are below their precautionary standards and are not harmful. To give voice to concerned residents, city, county and state officials put together Thursday night's town hall forum. 


Waste Management Task Force Holds A Public Meeting

Jul 21, 2016
Dump Truck
Pixabay / pixabay.com

People voiced concerns about possible alternatives to garbage dumps at a public hearing today. 


Landfill
Wikipedia Media Commons / wikipedia.org

Washtenaw County has decided that its Solid Waste Management Plan is ready for revision.  In this week's "Issues of the Environment," WEMU's David Fair speaks to Washtenaw County environmental services supervisor Jeff Krcmarik about how the plan will change.


Recycling
Pixabay / pixabay.com

Plans are getting underway to send less trash to landfills in Michigan and find more ways to reuse it.  A state Department of Environmental Quality task force plans a hearing today in Lansing to gather ideas from the public.  

Ann Arbor Wiki / localwiki.org

Candidates for Ann Arbor’s Ward 1 debated at the city’s Community Television Network studios last night. 


Fracking
Wikipedia Media Commons / wikipedia.org

Fracking, to say the least, is a controversial method of energy resource extraction.  Those who implement the practice contend it's more efficient, effective, and is not an environmental hazard.  There are many who disagree, particularly when it comes to environmental impact.  In this week’s, “Issues of the Environment,” WEMU’s David Fair discusses fracking and the effort to put it to a vote of the people with LuAnne Kozma, the ‎campaign director at The Committee to Ban Fracking in Michigan​. 


Barbara Lucas / 89.1 WEMU

In 1980 Congress created the Superfund to clean up hazardous waste sites that have passed criteria placing them on the “National Priorities List.” If and when funding becomes available for a site, the EPA works with the state’s DEQ to remediate it.  When polluters can’t be made to pay to clean them up, the Superfund pays, using taxpayer money. In Michigan, there are currently 65 sites on the National Priorities List.  Should Ann Arbor become one of them?

 


Michigan State Capitol
Wikipedia Media Commons / wikipedia.org

The legislative committee looking into the Flint water crisis wrapped up hearings Tuesday without hearing from Governor Rick Snyder, his senior aides, or former emergency managers who were in charge of the city at the outset of the debacle.


Barbara Lucas / 89.1 WEMU

For over ten years, the cleanup criterion for 1,4-Dioxane in Michigan has been 85 ppb.  This is in spite of the fact that in 2010, the EPA in recommended 3.5 ppb as the screening level for a one in 100,000 cancer risk. Finally, the Michigan DEQ has proposed a safer limit:  7.2 ppb.  Today—Earth Day—WEMU’s “The Green Room” looks a how this may affect Ann Arbor’s groundwater cleanup.