Environment

Environment
12:45 pm
Wed March 26, 2014

Neighbors in Action: Michigan Food and Farming Systems

Denae Friedheim is the operator of Foodshed Farm in Bath Township.
Credit Courtesy of www.miffs.org

It’s Wednesday and time for our Neighbors in Action segment, where we feature people and organizations working to make our community a better place. Today we feature the Michigan Food & Farming Systems, or MIFFS. It’s a statewide organization based in East Lansing that advocates for and offers assistance to new and women farmers, as well as those from underrepresented groups in Michigan’s agriculture industry.

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Environment
2:24 pm
Tue March 25, 2014

Great Lakes Month in Review: Tar sands, Great Lakes Day, water retail

Gary Wilson explains that when shipping accidents occur, tar sand oil sinks, making it much harder to clean up.
Credit Flickr - chefranden

At the end of each month on Current State, we check in with Great Lakes commentator and journalist Gary Wilson for updates on environmental stories from around the Basin.

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Environment
1:19 pm
Tue March 18, 2014

Grass carp, the overlooked Asian carp

Dr. Dan O’Keefe explains that carp species will be most problematic in bay areas and connected rivers with rich nutrients.
Credit Flickr - Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources

Most people have heard about Asian Carp and the threat they pose to the Great Lakes. However, many don't understand what the label Asian carp means. There are many types of fish that fall under the Asian carp umbrella, each bringing their own unique peril to the Great Lakes basin. One type of Asian carp that is overlooked and underestimated is the grass carp.

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Environment
12:57 pm
Mon March 17, 2014

Emergency personnel plan for mid-Michigan flood scenarios

Emergency personnel are preparing for the dangers of possible springtime flooding.
Credit Fickr - cseeman

The mercury is slowing climbing and Thursday marks the first day of spring. As the snow fades away it’s time to be aware of the dangers of flooding. High water can be a dangerous scenario for drivers on the roads and also for anyone in low-lying areas. First responders are getting ready for those potential hazards.

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Environment
12:55 pm
Tue March 11, 2014

Models help communities plan for climate change

Laura Schmitt-Olabisi's project focuses on a model of Detroit in the case of an extreme heat wave, but also the uncertainty of climate change.
Credit Flickr - Sagittariuss

Trying to determine the impacts of climate change is a difficult task. There are hundreds of different factors which could determine how communities are influenced. To more effectively understand the challenges associated with climate change, scientists are using system dynamics models. Current State’s Emanuele Berry spoke with Laura Schmitt-Olabisi, an ecologist and modeler at Michigan State University, about her latest project that explores how higher temperatures could impact Detroit.

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Environment
1:06 pm
Thu March 6, 2014

When passenger pigeons filled Michigan skies

Seven passenger pigeons from the aviary at the University of Chicago, 1896.
Credit Wikimedia Commons

Later this year, we mark the 100th anniversary of the extinction of the passenger pigeon---the last being a resident of a Cincinatti zoo.  The well-publicized event capped the annihilation of a species whose population at one point was so overwhelming that one ornithologist believed there were more passenger pigeons than all other species combined. 

Efforts to bring the population under control began back in the mid 19th century, in part because enormous flocks wreaked havoc on trees and farms.

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Environment
2:04 pm
Tue March 4, 2014

Could Michigan do more with its water resources?

The Great Lakes Compact bans freshwater exports, but as Dale Buss explains, there are opportunities to positively exploit shipping freshwater to areas in need, such as California.
Credit Flickr - gbozik photography

With snow piled deep across the Great Lakes region, there are hopes that the upcoming melt will push lake levels higher. It’s a scenario envied by many in the American west, especially in California where residents are being hammered by the severest drought in three decades. 

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:01 pm
Tue February 25, 2014

Great Lakes Month in Review: Algae blooms and Gov. Snyder's record

Wilson says its perplexing and frustrating that Snyder has not mentioned the Army Corp study on invasive Asian Carp.
Credit NASA Goddard Photo and Video

At the end of each month we check in with Great Lakes commentator and journalist Gary Wilson for updates on environmental stories from around the basin. For today’s Great Lakes Month in Review, we’re focusing on Governor Snyder’s environmental efforts and algae blooms.

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Radio Made in Michigan
12:34 pm
Mon February 24, 2014

Supreme Court hears arguments on EPA's reach

The U.S. Supreme Court will hear arguments today about the EPA's ability to regulate certain kinds of emissions.
Credit Flickr - SalFalko

The U. S. Supreme Court hears arguments today that will help determine the scope of what kinds of emissions the Environmental Protection Agency can regulate. The outcome could have a big effect on industrial facilities nationwide.

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Radio Made in Michigan
12:34 pm
Tue February 18, 2014

Innovative urban tree farm to plant soon in Detroit

Hantz Farm plots were originally intended for agriculture or Christmas trees, but neighbors raised concerns about rodents and pesticides.
Credit Flickr - Mr.Mac2009


After years of delays, Hantz farm is starting to take shape. In 2009, John Hantz, CEO of Southfield-based Hantz Group LLC proposed building the world’s largest urban farm in Detroit. After cutting through red tape and shifting plans to center on building an urban tree farm, the project is starting to unfold.

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:15 pm
Thu February 13, 2014

Ingham commissioners consider parks millage

Ingham County Commissioner Randy Schafer argues that other county departments are more in need of revenue than parks. However, Koening and Holman are not eager to dismiss the discussion.
Credit Flickr - UGArdener

The Ingham County Board of Commissioners is looking at a possible county parks millage. Earlier this week, the body asked its County Services committee to begin work on a draft proposal. The focus of a millage would primarily be an expansion of Lansing’s Rivertrail network.

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Radio Made in Michigan
12:55 pm
Thu February 6, 2014

China's environmental concerns could be GM's problem too

Credit Flickr - kevin dooley


You’ve probably seen the pictures of the Chinese smog problem, including shots from Shanghai or Beijing that show buildings disappearing in what appears to be a thick, brown, fog. There are a number of things that cause smog, but one of them is the increasing numbers of cars and that has implications for U. S. automakers like General Motors, which counts China as its biggest market.

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Radio Made in Michigan
2:23 pm
Thu January 30, 2014

MSU musician builds greener instrument

Alex Smith builds his own marimba out of Michigan Sassafras.
Credit Gabriela Saldivia/The Michigandered Marimba


When we think about our carbon footprint, we often look at things like our car’s gas mileage, our home’s energy usage, and how far our food had to travel to get to the plate. Rarely mentioned in a discussion about carbon footprints, however, are musical instruments.

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:32 pm
Tue December 3, 2013

Current State #212 | December 3, 2013

Today on Current State: former LSJ executive Mickey Hirten joins City Pulse as editorial director; tar sands shipping in the Great Lakes region; and a new Broad Art Museum exhibit pays homage to a Lansing-born visionary architect.

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:22 pm
Tue December 3, 2013

Report: Great Lakes ill-equipped to ship tar sands safely

As the tar sands industry continues to grow, a pressing issue is finding ways to transport the crude oil to midwest refineries. Some are hoping to ship tar sands across the Great Lakes, while others fear another disaster like the Kalamazoo spill.
Credit Wikimedia Commons

Recently, the EPA denied Enbridge’s request to extend the deadline for dredging sections of the Kalamazoo River. Enbridge is still trying to clean up the remaining tar sands crude oil in the Kalamazoo watershed from the spill three years ago.

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:49 pm
Tue November 26, 2013

Great Lakes Month in Review: Asian carp and petcoke

Four years ago Asian carp DNA was detected in the Chicago River. With that, ‘Carp Watch’ began and four years later, the watch continues.
Credit Wikimedia Commons


We check in monthly with Great Lakes commentator and journalist Gary Wilson for updates on environmental stories from around the basin. For today’s Great Lakes Month in Review, we’re focusing on petcoke piles and Asian carp.

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Radio Made in Michigan
10:39 am
Wed November 20, 2013

Artist Chris Jordan captures immensity of modern woes

Chris Jordan's project "In Katrina's Wake: Portraits of Loss from an Unnatural Disaster" includes this image of the remains of a business in St. Bernard Parish.
Credit www.chrisjordan.com

Tonight,  the MSU Department of Geography welcomes acclaimed artist and cultural activist Chris Jordan to the Pasant Theatre at Wharton Center. Jordan turns numbers into powerful art.

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:26 pm
Tue November 19, 2013

Report: Climate change threatens to alter big game in Michigan

Moose are among Michigan's big game animals possibly affected by changes in climate.
Credit Flickr - als pictures

Throughout the 20th century large investments of time and money were made to help restore big game populations across the U.S. Many of these efforts were successful, but those successes may be short lived.

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:14 pm
Thu November 14, 2013

On hunt’s eve Saginaw Chippewa’s to hold vigil for wolf

The Saginaw Chippewa Tribe is holding a candlelight vigil and sacred fire to honor the wolf.
Credit Wikimedia Commons


Tomorrow marks the opening day of Michigan’s first wolf hunt in nearly 40 years. The state has issued 1,200 hunting licenses to kill 43 wolves, all in the Upper Peninsula.

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:02 pm
Tue November 12, 2013

Despite expert agreement, perceptions of climate change vary

Credit http://environment.yale.edu/climate-communication/

 

Reports, predictions and warnings of climate change are hard to avoid these days. But just how are Americans processing all of this news, and what do we really think about climate change and our environment?  

MSU alum and director of the Yale Project on Climate Change Communication Anthony Leiserowitz explores these questions in his research.

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Radio Made in Michigan
12:57 pm
Thu November 7, 2013

Current State #197 | November 7, 2013

Today on Current State: Michigan human trafficking report released; destruction from MSU football tailgating; an 'Interrupting Racism' workshop; and Asian-American stereotypes in the media.

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Radio Made in Michigan
12:41 pm
Thu November 7, 2013

Destruction from tailgating at Michigan game called ‘worst ever’

An influx of tailgaters for the Michigan game meant some MSU trees were 'pruned' or otherwise damaged. The trees are important not only for their beauty, but also to classrooms and researchers.
Credit Wikimedia Commons

Every home football Saturday here in East Lansing, thousands of people flock to the Michigan State campus to take part in a sacred ritual:  tailgating.  But the pastime takes a toll. After the celebrating, landscaping personnel at MSU repair damage to grass and trees.

Some of those personnel are calling last Saturday’s damage the worst they’ve seen.

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:02 pm
Tue November 5, 2013

Michigan economic developers eye ‘Blue Economy’

When people think of Michigan’s economy, they typically point to the State’s automobile industry or its agricultural sector. Often overlooked is one of Michigan’s greatest natural assets: water.
Credit Wikimedia Commons

A new report commissioned by the governor’s office focuses on accelerating Michigan’s water based or ‘Blue economy.’ The paper’s author, John Austin, is the Director of the Michigan Economic Center at Prima Civitas Foundation. Austin says that  a “Blue Economy” is similar to a “Green Economy”.

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Radio Made in Michigan
12:15 pm
Tue October 29, 2013

Great Lakes Month in Review: fracking, ballast water and petcoke

Current State contributor Gary Wilson explains that pet coke is the by-product of the tar sand petroleum being mined in Canada and throughout the northern tier of the United States.
Credit http://priceofoil.org/

At the end of each month we check in with Great Lakes Commentator and journalist Gary Wilson for updates on environmental stories from around the basin.

For today’s Great Lakes Month in Review, we’re focusing on fracking, ballast water and petcoke.  

In July, Michigan residents watched as petcoke piled up along the Detroit River. Now residents in Chicago are scrutinizing rising piles of the waste product.

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Radio Made in Michigan
12:55 pm
Thu October 24, 2013

Current State #186 | October 24, 2013

Today on Current State: Lansing's 'Marketplace Project'; HIV in Ingham County; what deregulation could mean for Michigan; environmental changes effect on Isle Royale; and a review of "The Ocean at the End of the Lane". 

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Radio Made in Michigan
12:24 pm
Thu October 24, 2013

Isle Royale ecosystem tested by environmental changes

The rise in ticks may be attributed to warmer temperatures, which could be further evidence of global warming.
Credit Wikimedia Commons

The moose is one of the largest and most elusive land animals in North America. Moose were once found in both the Upper and Lower Peninsula, and now they’re concentrated in a few isolated areas of the state.

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Radio Made in Michigan
4:52 pm
Tue October 22, 2013

New report outlines attitudes on Michigan’s energy future

Wind is the least costly renewable energy and costs have even declined since 2008, says Michigan Public Service Commission Chair John Quakenbush.
Credit Wikimedia Commons

In 2008,  the state legislature passed Michigan’s Renewable Portfolio Standard. The law requires that by the year 2015,  utilities must generate at least 10 percent of their energy from renewable sources.  As 2015 approaches, state officials are working to determine the next steps for Michigan’s energy policy.

Earlier this year we spoke with Michigan Public Service Commission Chair John Quakenbush. At the time he was holding public forums on the state’s energy future. The information compiled at the forums and online are part of four comprehensive draft reports.

 

John Quakenbush discusses what he’s learned since starting this process.

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Radio Made in Michigan
12:01 pm
Tue October 15, 2013

MSU researcher updates fight against ash borer

MSU researcher Deborah McCullough says the emerald ash borer might have arrived in Michigan as early as the 1980s.
Credit http://www.ent.msu.edu/

The emerald ash borer has killed acres of ash trees across Michigan since 2002.  However, new research suggest the invasive beetle from Asia may have arrived in Michigan even earlier.

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:13 pm
Tue October 8, 2013

Current State #174 | October 8, 2013

Today on Current State: MSU faculty on classroom transparency after Penn affair; interactive online game to learn Chinese; and concerns about the possible storage of Canadian nuclear waste near the Great Lakes.

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:06 pm
Thu October 3, 2013

Michigan Civilian Conservation Corps explores new funding

The CCC taught 3 million young, unmarried men how to build and maintain outdoor recreational areas. In turn, it gave them stable employment.
Credit Wikimedia Commons

In 1933, America was in the grip of the Great Depression.  Facing the specter of economic ruin,  President Franklin D. Roosevelt instituted a number of federal recovery programs, which came to be known as “Alphabet Soup.”  One of those was the CCC or the Civilian Conservation Corps

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