Source Water Protection, Michigan Holiday Gift Guide, Dow/GM Settlement Funds

For Friday, Nov. 5, 2021

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1 – Thirty Michigan communities have received grants to help protect water at the source. 

The grants, through the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy, will help fund programs to protect clean water sources and educate the public about where their water originates and how best to ensure it remains healthy.

About $368,000 in grants, ranging from awards of $2,000-$70,000, will support programs including updated plans to 10 wellhead protection areas, educate the public about their water sources and develop surface water intake programs. 

Communities receiving the grants include Gladwin, Vassar and the Great Lakes Water Authority for Lake Huron. 

The grants were announced in conjunction with the first-ever Source Water Protection Week declared by the American Water Works Association.

2 – It’s not even Thanksgiving yet, but you’ll probably hear Christmas music playing at local businesses. 

The state Department of Natural Resources has a holiday gift guide

The list includes products from a ‘These Goods are Good for Michigan’ program, inspired by the state’s great outdoors. Every purchase supports state parks, trails and waterways.

Gift ideas include T-shirts featuring red oak, sugar maple and white pine trees, a card game featuring plants and animals and the habitat they need to survive, and a Michiganology collection of vintage apparel, drinkware, prints and more. 

3 – The Tittabawassee River and the Saginaw River and Bay Natural Resource Trustee Councils have announced funding for restoration projects in the Saginaw Bay watershed.

This funding comes from two sources, a 2020 settlement with the Dow Chemical Co. and a 1998 settlement with General Motors and others for natural resource damages. 

The two trustee councils will provide about $5.7 million to fund restoration projects, in addition to projects already specified in the two settlements. 

Trustees are asking people to submit pre-proposals by Dec. 31.

Funding for projects selected in the final restoration plan will likely be available in 2023.

Credit: Conrad Kuiper 

Restoration projects must provide some benefit to the natural resources that were injured as a result of the release of contaminants.

The contaminants at issue in the two settlements are dioxins and furans in the Dow settlement and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) in the General Motors settlement.

– Mr. Great Lakes is heard Friday mornings in Bay City, Michigan, on Delta College Public Radio 90.1 FM (listen). Follow @jeffkart on Twitter #MrGreatLakes

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