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Rich Vander Veen: Guiding communities to clean-power prosperity

Corn and soybeans are the cash crops for brothers Kent and Olin Humm, seventh-generation farmers near the Gratiot County village of Breckenridge. But the payments they receive for the four wind turbines on their 3,000 acres sure don’t hurt. “We’re not out working in the field today,” said Kent Humm in his workshop on a wet spring afternoon, “but we’re still making money.” That’s music to the ears of clean-energy entrepreneur Rich Vander Veen, the 2014 recipient of the Michigan Environmental Council’s Helen and William Milliken Distinguished Service Award.
View ArticleJul 3, 2014  •  Spring 2014 - Michigan Environmental Report

Steve Hamilton: Spearheading a river’s recovery with sound science

Steve Hamilton was on his way to a meeting in East Lansing in 2010 when he heard about the oil spill. A pipeline owned by Canadian energy giant Enbridge had gushed more than a million gallons of heavy crude into a Kalamazoo River tributary. As details emerged, the startling reality became clear: The river Hamilton loves had just suffered the worst inland oil spill in U.S. history.
View ArticleJul 2, 2014  •  Spring 2014 - Michigan Environmental Report

President’s Column: How the transportation deal stalled

The condition of Michigan’s roads, bridges and public transportation is, to put it mildly, nothing to brag about. So it was a big opportunity for MEC when, in 2011, Gov. Rick Snyder asked us to be at the table as he began to develop his transportation and infrastructure special message to the legislature. We told the governor then what we still say today: How you spend your transportation dollars is just as important as how much you spend. In the three years since, we’ve been working not only to secure adequate funding for our transportation system, but also to transform it.
View ArticleJul 2, 2014  •  Spring 2014 - Michigan Environmental Report
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