Aquatic Invasive Recommendations, Natural Sinkholes, and Residential Energy Use

The Environment Report, with Mr. Great Lakes, Jeff Kart. As heard at 9 a.m. Fridays in Bay City, Michigan, on Q-90.1 FM, Delta College. The report for Aug. 30, 2013:

1 –

A state Aquatic Invasive Species Advisory Council has made several recommendations to Gov. Rick Snyder.

The governor and Michigan Legislature created the Council in 2011, to study and provide recommendations to combat aquatic invasive species in Michigan waters.

The recommendations include:

pure michigan logo phragmites plant
Collage of the logo and plant/CC.
  • Greater use of education programs for buyers and sellers, focusing on pet and aquarium stores and other outlets, according to Michigan United Conservation Clubs.
  • The Council also recommends a partnership between prevention programs and the Pure Michigan campaign.
  • Under management of phragmites, an invasive reed that clogs the Saginaw Bay shoreline, the Council recommends support and investment in biological controls for the plant. The Council believes bio-control agents, like bugs that feed on phragmites, will be available for commercial and agency use in about 5 years.

Representatives on the Council included Michigan United Conservation Clubs.

The MUCC says the conclusions of the Council are worthwhile, and the group hopes the governor acts on the recommendations.

Michigan AIS Program Overview – Summer 2013

2 –

Not all sinkholes are bad sinkholes.

Natural sinkholes in Northeast Michigan offer a unique opportunity, say representatives from Huron Pines, a conservation organization in Gaylord.

Natural sinkholes are rare, bowl-shaped geologic formations that fill with groundwater to form spring-fed sinkhole lakes. There are seven sinkhole lakes in the Pigeon River Country State Forest, and they have recently been opened for public fishing.

But continued use and visits by anglers has contributed to bank erosion, negatively impacting each lake.

So Huron Pines, the state Department of Natural Resources and Trout Unlimited are working to protect the lakes from erosion with straw bales, brush piling, and by planting native vegetation.

Projects have recently been completed at three of the lakes, according to Huron Pines. Two more lakes are to be addressed this year and next year.

3 –

If you suffered a power outage this summer, you know just how much your home relies on electricity.

The federal Energy Information Administration has gathered information on residential energy consumption through a nationwide survey of homes and energy suppliers.

The results show that Michigan households use 38 percent more energy than the U.S. average. We also spent 6 percent more for energy, on average, than other states.

You may be surprised to learn that air conditioning only accounts for only 1 percent of energy use in Michigan homes, since the weather here is cooler than in other areas of the U.S.

Heating makes up an above-average portion of our home energy use, due to those cooler temperatures.


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