Michigan Environmental Report

News from Michigan Environmental Council on public policies affecting the health of Michigan's people and environment

Petoskey Prize winner Nancy Warren: passionate advocate for the wild Upper Peninsula

For some, happiness is associated with pleasant things, like a good book, maybe relaxing with family, or the satisfaction that comes from a job well done. But not Nancy Warren. Her contentment? It seems to come from ‘the good fight,’ preferably one with long odds of winning.

“My husband has said I am not happy unless I have five or six wars going on,” Nancy laughs. “In fact, it’s become a tradition when friends visit, they always say, ‘What are you fighting this time?’”

The inclination is ingrained. “Once you get the activist’s blood,” she contends, “you can’t stop.” Which has been good for the environment of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.

Milliken award winner Joan Rose: Life saving water detective and public health visionary

For Joan Rose, water has always held a kind of magic. Maybe that’s in part because Rose, Homer Nowlin Chair in Water Research at Michigan State University, was born and raised in a place without any water to speak of: Victorville, California, which she calls, “a sleepy little desert town.” As a kid, water meant fun. It meant family beach vacations or lakeside camping trips.

You can still find Rose having fun on the beach—today she’s more likely lounging in Saugatuck or on Mackinac Island than the Pacific Coast—but her relationship with water has become something much deeper. It is scarcely possible to overstate the impact and influence of her pioneering work on the causes and prevention of waterborne diseases.

Water researcher Joan Rose, Upper Peninsula advocate Nancy Warren earn top environmental awards

Michigan Environmental Council to honor pair June 14 in Ypsilanti

Michigan Environmental Council (MEC) next week will honor two outstanding leaders for Michigan's public health, waters and wildlife.

Joan Rose -- a Michigan State University microbiologist who has devoted her career to improving water quality, trekking across Michigan, the U.S., and the world to investigate and raise awareness of waterborne disease outbreaks and develop preventions -- will receive the Helen & William Milliken Distinguished Service Award.

Nancy Warren -- an advocate who has worked tirelessly, voluntarily, and at personal sacrifice over the past 25 years to preserve special features of the Upper Peninsula -- will receive the Petoskey Prize for Environmental Leadership.

MEC opposes fox guarding the henhouse bills

Michigan Environmental Council opposes Senate Bills (SB) 652 and 653—widely known as the “fox guarding the henhouse” environmental measures—which passed the State House today.

MEC applauds 50% by 2030 clean energy accord

Michigan Environmental Council applauds the Clean Energy, Healthy Michigan ballot campaign and utility companies DTE Energy and Consumers Energy for reaching an agreement today that will see 50% of the utilities' energy portfolio made up of clean energy resources no later than 2030. This announcement is a big step forward for clean energy in Michigan and is a win for our air and water as well as Michigan ratepayers. 

20th Annual Environmental Awards Celebration is June 14


Our 20th Annual Environmental Awards Celebration will be held Thursday, June 14, 5:30-7:30 p.m. at the Ann Arbor Marriott Ypsilanti at Eagle Crest.

Participants in record numbers rally support during Lead Education Day in the Capitol

Some 100 people from across the state traveled to Lansing last Wednesday to rally lawmaker support for ending lead poisoning in Michigan.

Eighteen teams of three to five advocates fanned out across the State Capitol, meeting with approximately 90 state legislative offices as part of the largest-ever Lead Education Day—an annual event coordinated by MEC and our allies in the Michigan Alliance for Lead Safe Homes (MIALSH).

Delegation of State Rulemaking and Permitting Authority to Private Interests

Kudos to DEQ for taking a stand against some of the most dangerous environmental bills in memory. The agency submitted formal opposition to S.B. 652 and 653—recently passed by the State Senate—at a hearing yesterday in the House Michigan Competitiveness Committee. Those reckless bills would take authority for protecting our environment out of the hands of our elected officials and give it to panels made up of the very interests who directly profit from discharging pollutants into our air and water. Although DEQ submitted a “card” against the bills at the hearing, committee leaders did not make that fact known to those in attendance or the public.

Yesterday we shared the letter below with the House Michigan Competitiveness Committee, regarding Senate Bills 652 & 653, which would delegate state rulemaking and permitting authority to private interests.