Biodiversity and commerce in Michigan

Mar 13, 2013

A proposed bill making its way through the Michigan legislature aims to put tighter limits on the Department of Natural Resources and the Natural Resources Commission.

According to its website, the DNR currently has the responsibility to promote bio-diversity on state land by identifying, restoring and managing “those natural places or ecosystems in Michigan that, together, best represent the diversity of Michigan’s biological heritage."

Republican Senator Tom Casperson’s bill, SB 78, would prohibit the DNR from implementing its “Biodiversity Stewardship Area” program, which he claims would severely limit or preclude human activity on the land.  He claims the measure is supported by sportsmen, businesses and recreational enthusiasts.

To sort this out, we welcome Senator Tom Casperson of Escanaba and Ann Woiwode, director of The Sierra Club's Michigan chapter.