Pages tagged "environmental justice"
In 1959, E. Genevieve Gillette gathered conservation organizations and citizen activists like herself together. She was tired of the neglect faced by Michigan’s new state park system, which she had helped create.
The Michigan Parks Association was born from that meeting, and Gillette, its president, fought to improve the funding and direction the state gave to Michigan’s parks.
Soon after, she successfully lobbied the Michigan Legislature to pass a massive park bond. The following year, at 62 years old, she lobbied the U.S. Congress to pass a conservation fund and create Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore. Eventually, the two governments heeded all her demands.
More than 60 years later, civil servants gathered around a remembrance for Gillette: a newly erected historical marker at P.J. Hoffmaster State Park near Muskegon. Now, residents and tourists can read how one Michigan citizen led the charge in creating, expanding and funding Michigan’s state park system.Read more
Many Michigan families once had a set routine on school day mornings. Now, they are hazy due to COVID-19. The pandemic not only threatens public health and school openings, it could impact how well children concentrate and succeed academically.
Some families, however, have struggled to get children to school and to learn effectively at no fault of their own long before the pandemic began.Read more
Wednesday was historic in the fight for clean water. Michigan adopted enforceable limits on harmful chemical compounds in drinking water. The move, years in the making, will boost the physical and developmental health of those that have fought for years to make the limits a reality: the people.
A joint committee in the state’s legislature quietly allowed proposed limits on seven per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, commonly known as PFAS, in drinking water to lapse, setting the limits into law. Some limits are the lowest in the nation.
“These limits were long-needed and were long-supported by the vast majority of Michigan residents,” said Charlotte Jameson, program director for Michigan Environmental Council, who testified before the joint committee Wednesday. “These limits will have long-lasting benefits, too. They will prompt more site testing, place pressure on companies to stop using PFAS and galvanize more statewide PFAS protections.”Read more
Michigan Environmental Council’s board of directors is composed of 17 members committed to Michigan’s environment and whose experiences and perspectives make them champions of it. Jeremy Orr - Natural Resources Defense Council attorney and MEC board member representing the Michigan NAACP - is protecting Black Lives Matter protesters and their rights as a legal observer for the Detroit and Michigan chapter of the National Lawyers Guild.Read more
A bill increasing toxic chemical contamination accountability and pollution prevention unanimously passed the Michigan Senate Wednesday. It also serves as a reminder that the state’s first enforceable drinking water limits on PFAS have stalled in a committee for nearly three months, one step away from protecting human and environmental health.Read more
COVID-19 has cast a bright spotlight on water shutoffs.
In response, we’ve seen the governor order service be restored, extensive media coverage and a flock of new voices joining debates about best ways to provide this essential service.
Yet all this attention hasn’t translated into enough immediate action. Today, upwards of 10,000 Detroit residents lack running water in their homes!
Thank goodness for We the People of Detroit.Read more
Detroit will launch a citywide event this weekend to encourage participation in the 2020 census. Michigan Environmental Council’s engagement director said the effort comes at a time when federal funding stemming from it is needed most.
“Now more than ever we need to fill out our census forms,” said MEC’s Sandra Turner-Handy. “We have families in distress. The federal dollars we get from each family counted can go a long way in helping them and the Detroit community at large, especially as we recover from the COVID-19 pandemic and a recession.”Read more
DTE Energy’s attempt to significantly raise electricity rates on its residential customers and run dirty, expensive power plants was blunted Friday.
April was the first month in history more renewable energy was used in the United States than coal. The Michigan Public Service Commission issued an order which continues that trend by rejecting unjustified fossil fuel spending and reducing the 9 percent rate increase DTE asked to impose on its residential customers. The Commission’s decision will affect customer bills starting June 2020.Read more
Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel, Citizens Utility Board of Michigan and Michigan Environmental Council urged municipal utilities Friday to better protect their customers’ physical and financial health and well-being.Read more