Michigan Sulfide Mining Report, Contest WINer & Air Monitoring Comments Due

As heard on May 18, 2012, Friday Edition, Q-90.1 FM, Delta College public broadcasting …

Battery Acid

photo sulfide mining great lakes
via NWF

A report says the Great Lakes remain vulnerable to a new wave of sulfide mining.

That’s due to gaps, inconsistencies and loopholes in U.S. state and Canadian laws. The report, a legal analysis by the National Wildlife Federation and Ecojustice Canada,  says vulnerable areas include Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.

Sulfide mining has proven to be devastating to natural resources in parts of the western U.S. and Canada, the report’s authors say.

The report says that, across Michigan, Wisconsin and Minnesota and Ontario, laws do not offer adequate protections. Areas threatened by mining include the shores of Lake Superior.

Michigan ranked considerably lower than other states in the analysis.

The Michigan Environmental Council, representing groups in the Bay City area and elsewhere, is pushing for added protections in the state.

Spy on a Bluebird

An Earth Day Facebook Contest will fund a live-streaming webcam in the Saginaw Bay area.

The Saginaw Bay Watershed Initiative Network (WIN) held a contest last month, seeking the best ideas for environmental projects in the region.

After a round of entries, a proposal by the Chippewa Nature Center emerged with the most votes. The center will receive a $1,000 grant to develop a live-streaming webcam.

The cam will be placed in a bluebird nesting box on property owned by the center, located in Midland. The cam will be viewable via the Internet, and include infrared capabilities for nighttime viewing.

WIN is an organization funded by 11 foundations in the Saginaw Bay region.

And leaders say the group still has grants available for projects that address land use, water resources, agriculture, energy efficiency, wildlife habitat and regional marketing.

See saginawbaywin.org for more information.

The Air We Breathe

The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality is taking public comment on plans for air monitoring in 2013.

A draft Ambient Air Monitoring document recommends changes based on history, population and modifications to Clean Air Act requirements.

The state’s ambient air monitoring network includes a device in Bay City that monitors particulate matter emitted by power plants and vehicles. There are plans to shut down a lead monitoring site in Vassar.

The document is available online (as a pdf), and comments are being taken through June 5.

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