Pages tagged "Sustainable Agriculture"
Another Lackluster Plan Won’t Fix Lake Erie
In early December, Governor Gretchen Whitmer and leaders from departments of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE), Nature Resources (DNR), and Agriculture and Rural Development (MDARD) announced an adaptive management plan to tackle harmful algal blooms in Lake Erie.Read more
Meritless appointee rejections stunt progress
Michigan Senate Republicans put politics ahead of improving the lives of their constituents Tuesday when they rejected 13 expert appointees to citizen commissions and boards in a show against Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s COVID-19 decisions.
The party line rejection vote means appointees cannot be considered again for their respective workgroups, which provide policy recommendations to the state government and its elected leaders.
Included were four environmental appointees: Thomas Baird and David Cozad to the Natural Resources Commission; Erin Kricher to the Rural Development Fund Board; and Cheryl Kobernik to the Commission of Agriculture and Rural Development.Read more
Coalition files motion in support of livestock pollution protections
On Thursday, a coalition of eight Great Lakes region organizations filed a motion in support of the area’s people, water and wildlife.
Michigan Environmental Council, Environmental Law & Policy Center and other partners seek to legally intervene in the 2020 Concentrated Animal Feeding Operation general permit contested by Michigan Farm Bureau and livestock commodity groups.Read more
Organization forms to improve economic, environmental conditions for farms
Tuesday marked the launch of an organization aimed at improving the economic and environmental conditions hindering Michigan farms.
Michigan Agriculture Advancement, or MiAA, will advocate for statewide policies and programs that promote farm prosperity, weather resiliency, water quality and rural economies. Michigan Environmental Council will be a strong supporter of its efforts.Read more
MEC’s 2020 Petoskey Prize Winner: Gary Rayburn, Pine River protector
Don a coat and walk to the Pine River’s edge in Gratiot County during Michigan’s winter months and you’d think the Pine River “was the most wonderful river in the world,” said Gary Rayburn.
Gary Rayburn is not fooled, though. The high E. coli levels are always there. And when the weather warms, the algae rise from the depths, a thick, neon green sign of nutrient overload from manure runoff.Read more
Algal bloom prediction proves governments must improve their nutrient pollution plans
Thursday morning, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and its partners released the 2020 Seasonal Forecast of Harmful Algal Blooms for Lake Erie.
NOAA predicted a moderate bloom severity of 4.5 out of 10 that could possibly reach 5.5. An index of 5 indicates severe algal blooms. In 2015, the governors of Ohio and Michigan, along with the premier of Ontario, set a public goal of reducing nutrient pollution by 40% by 2025, with 2020 as a halfway interim goal of 20%.
In response to today’s report, the Alliance for the Great Lakes, Freshwater Future, Michigan Environmental Council, and Ohio Environmental Council are calling on the governors and the premier to improve domestic action plans to provide a blueprint, not just a long list of best management practices, that the public can use to hold decision-makers accountable.Read more
Plan for Lake Erie needs more punch to knock back algal blooms
A recent draft plan to make Lake Erie healthier and bluer could continue to leave it algae green. Michigan residents can join MEC and other advocates to help improve it.
In April, after weeks of research and collaboration, Michigan Environmental Council sent in a sign-on letter with allies to the state of Michigan. They asked for revisions to its adaptive management plan for Lake Erie's high nutrient levels during a public comment period, which is open to all Michiganders until June 19.
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New animal waste permit a missed opportunity to fully protect environment
New animal waste regulations came into effect Wednesday after more than three months of review by the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy. Michigan Environmental Council, member group Environmentally Concerned Citizens of South Central Michigan (ECCSCM) and other allies worked together to urge more stringent requirements during the draft proposal process, some of which took effect.Read more