1 – More trash went into Michigan landfills last year.
According to the latest solid waste report from the Department of Environmental Quality, state residents are throwing away less trash, with volumes down a half percent in fiscal year 2013 compared to 2012.
Still, overall waste to state landfills increased by 1.4 percent, due to a rise in garbage from other states and Canada.
Michigan landfills took in almost 7.7 million cubic yards of trash from Canada in 2013, and about 34.5 million cubic yards from state residents.
At current rates, Michigan has about 28 years left before its landfills are at capacity.
Bay County residents disposed of about 380,000 cubic yards of trash. Saginaw County threw out about 708,000 cubic yards.
The report covers the 2013 fiscal year, from October 2012 through September 2013. Read the whole thing here.
2 – Consumers Energy is shutting down some of its coal-burning power plants, including in Bay County.
Consumers has hired an engineering company called AMEC to decommission seven operating units at its three oldest coal-fired generating plants.
The Weadock portion of the Karn-Weadock complex will be decommissioned, according to The Muskegon Chronicle. Consumers officials have told Michigan regulators that it’s not economical to bring those units (7 and 8) into compliance with federal air quality standards.
The units being shut down across the state have been operating for an average of 60 years, and Consumers plans to retire them by April 2016.
Consumers Energy plans to purchase a 540-megawatt, natural-gas power plant in Jackson to partially offset the planned retirements.
3 – The ground may be frozen, but trees for planting are available.
The Bay County Soil Conservation District is again sponsoring a spring tree sale.
You can order seedlings of spruce, pine and fir in quantities of 50, 100, 500, or 1,000.
Transplant species of spruce, pine, cedar, balsam and fir can be ordered in multiples of five.
Fruit trees such as apple, pear and cherry also are available, along with strawberry, blueberry, raspberry and grape plants.
For more information, you can call the District office at 684-1040. The District also holds another tree sale in the fall.
– Mr. Great Lakes, as heard at 9 a.m. Fridays in Bay City, Michigan, on Delta College Q-90.1 FM NPR.