Our network

Environment

My Town: Time to trash the tree! Free Christmas tree recycling locations

My Town: Time to trash the tree!  Free Christmas tree recycling locations

Christmas is over, which means it’s time to trash the tree.

Many municipalities are offering free tree recycling services to residents with a natural tree.  Some communities are planning to put the trees through a chipper and use the remnants to cover park trails and other green spaces.  Here is the schedule for live tree drop-offs:

Ada Township (Through Jan. 12)

  • Ada Township Park, from 7:30 a.m. to 8 p.m.

 

Alpine Township (Through Jan. 31)

  • Behind Township Hall, 5255 Alpine Ave. NW

 

Cannon Township (Through Jan. 10)

  • West side of the township building; RHS Honor Society will help unload trees Jan. 10 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. (donations encouraged)

 

Courtland Township (Through Jan. 31)

  • Fire Station #1 on 14 Mile Road

 

My Town: Waterfowl killer spreads in Great Lakes basin

My Town: Waterfowl killer spreads in Great Lakes basin

MUSKEGON, Mich.—A destructive invader has made its way to the Great Lakes basin.

In a three-year study, researchers from ten universities, including the Grand Valley State University’s Annis Water Resources Institute, recently found invasive faucet snails in many new locations throughout the Great Lakes basin.  The snails carry parasites that are deadly to native waterfowl, including ducks and coots.

The findings suggest faucet snails have spread to more areas along the Great Lakes coastline than experts realized. The snail is only about a half-inch in height, making them easy to transport and spread and difficult to kill.   When waterfowl eat the infected snails, the trematodes the snails carry attack the ducks’ internal organs, causing lesions and hemorrhaging.  Infected birds appear lethargic and have problems diving and flying before dying.

My Town: Dune land dispute ends in deal

My Town: Dune land dispute ends in deal

MONTAGUE, Mich.—A year-long battle over dune land in White River Township is over.

Monday, the Township reached a settlement with Bro G Land Company to buy the two-acre property on Lake Michigan.  The Township plans to incorporate the land into its Barrier Dune Sanctuary.

The deal ends the legal dispute over a dune land driveway. The developer wanted to create a 1,200 foot private pathway that would cut through the sanctuary to access the property. 

“The Township looks forward to bringing this matter to a close,” said Township Supervisor Mike Cockerill. “The Township was required by the MDNR grant in 1985 to protect the Barrier Dune Sanctuary and this settlement will fulfill that obligation. The Barrier Dune Sanctuary is a popular public amenity that also embraces the preservation of natural habitat and unique sand dune features for our children and grandchildren.”

My Town: Community tapped to determine future of White Lake

My Town: Community tapped to determine future of White Lake

WHITEHALL, Mich.—What should the future of White Lake include?

Community members are encouraged to answer that question in a confidential survey now available online.  The survey should take approximately 12 minutes to finish.  The results will be used to guide local, state and national officials as they plan the future of the region.

The project is being sponsored by the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality, the Muskegon Lake Watershed Partnership, the White Lake Public Advisory Council and the Great Lakes Commission along with the Muskegon County Convention and Visitors Bureau, local chambers of commerce and other community groups.

OPINION: Michigan, Our Great State

OPINION: Michigan, Our Great State

Michigan, our great state. Whether we realize it or not, we really do have a great state.

Granted, we had an unusual winter this past year but then again, have you ever seen the grass and trees so green before? Even people returning from Florida this year have commented about everything being so green!

Despite all of the good things, I still hear people complain about it either being too cool, too cloudy, too hot, etc. To those people I say, maybe it’s time for you to move to a perfect climate, wherever that may be.

I love Michigan and all it has to offer. We have the Great Lakes, a treasure on their own. I used to have an older friend, Bill Hickey, who had apple orchards.

He told me, “You will never, ever find an apple as snappy when you bite into it as a Michigan apple in the fall, because of the Great Lakes.” 

My Town Whitehall: Community supports removing White Lake from toxic hot spots list

My Town Whitehall: Community supports removing White Lake from toxic hot spots list

WHITEHALL, Mich.—By the end of this year, White Lake may no longer be on a list of toxic hot spots.

Monday night, a small group of community members gathered at White Lake Community Library to weigh in on the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality's plan to remove the lake from a list of 14 areas of concern in the state. Some community members thanked federal, state and local officials for their work to completely restore the lake, which was declared an area of concern in 1985 because of environmental degradation, mostly due to industrial and municipal wastes.  

The public comment period ends at midnight Thursday.  Michigan's DEQ will then consider possible revisions to the delisting report before resubmitting the document to the federal government.  The federal approval process may take several months; the DEQ hopes to have the delisting finalized by October.

 

My Town Whitehall: City takes first steps to remove White Lake from toxic hot spots list

My Town Whitehall: City takes first steps to remove White Lake from toxic hot spots list

WHITEHALL, Mich.—Steps toward removing White Lake from a list of toxic hot spots is the topic of a public meeting Monday night.

The lake was declared an area of concern in 1985 because of environmental degradation, mostly due to industrial and municipal wastes.  However, in recent years, a long list of specific ecological problems with the lake have been addressed. Federal officials could remove the lake from the list as soon as this fall. 

One step in that process is to hold meetings for the public to comment on the topic. Monday’s meeting will take place at White Lake Community Library in Whitehall starting at 6 p.m.