Search Results for: groundwater

Good News on Groundwater

Photo: Capitol of Michigan. Credit: David Marvin via Editor’s note: Register today for FLOW’s March 21 groundwater webinar, “The Case for a Statewide Septic Code: Michigan Must Inspect Septic Systems to Protect Fresh Water.” There is good news in the often-overlooked realm of groundwater protection in Michigan: millions of dollars proposed to study and… Read more »

Got Groundwater?

Photo: Groundwater helps recharge the Great Lakes, and is the source of drinking water for 45% of Michigan residents. Credit: José Manuel Suárez, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons. Editor’s note: Register today for FLOW’s March 21 groundwater webinar, “The Case for a Statewide Septic Code: Michigan Must Inspect Septic Systems to Protect Fresh Water.”… Read more »

How Are We Using Great Lakes Water and Groundwater?

Above: Watershed art by Glenn Wolff. By Bob Otwell, FLOW Board member A Great Lakes water use report recently released by the Great Lakes Commission provides an important snapshot of the kinds and volumes of water withdrawals in the region. The report found that an average 37.5 billion gallons of water per day were withdrawn… Read more »

Building Consensus to Protect Michigan’s Groundwater

Michigan’s groundwater is a critical part of Michigan’s present and future. Increasing population, a changing climate, and limited public funding for prevention and cleanup of contamination will continue to stress groundwater resources. The report, “Building Consensus: Securing Protection of Michigan’s Groundwater,” contains findings about the status of Michigan’s groundwater and also recommendations on how to improve its protection.

Protecting Groundwater and Michigan’s Most Endangered Wildflower

An unseen resource, Michigan’s groundwater provides drinking water to more than 4 million Michiganders, supports agricultural irrigation and manufacturing, and contributes a significant portion of the inflow to the Great Lakes. But there is still another reason to protect Michigan’s groundwater: conservation of our state’s biological diversity. Groundwater is critical to valuable species and their habitats, including cold water trout streams like the Au Sable River–and a rare wildflower found exclusively in Michigan.

Public Trust Bill Package Boosts Groundwater Protection in Michigan

FLOW Executive Director Liz Kirkwood expressed strong support for legislation introduced in Lansing today that would shore up public trust protections for the Great Lakes and groundwater against water-bottling companies thirsting for profits and strengthen safeguards for waterways on state land. “The Great Lakes must never be for sale,” Kirkwood said in a video-recording message for the press conference announcing the legislation. “And Michigan’s groundwater must never become privatized and siphoned away.”

Groundwater Emerges into the Light

Overlooked for many years, groundwater has taken the driver’s seat in 2022, as multiple organizations promote a deeper understanding of the source of drinking water for 145 million Americans and approximately 4.5 million Michiganders. Promotion this week comes from the Groundwater Foundation and National Ground Water Association as they encourage their constituents and the general public to observe National Groundwater Awareness Week. The two organizations call attention to  “the responsible development, management, and use of groundwater. The event is also a platform to encourage yearly water well testing and well maintenance, and the promotion of policies impacting groundwater quality and supply.”

Groundwater, though Invisible, Is Critical for Our Survival

What’s the natural resource that is critical to the survival of billions of human beings but invisible to the vast majority of them? The answer is groundwater, both in Michigan and globally. Out of sight but not detached from our economy and health, groundwater plays a critical role in Michigan communities, supplying 45 percent of Michigan’s population with drinking water. Yet groundwater is a neglected and much-abused part of our state’s natural endowment. This year, groundwater will be in the spotlight on the annual World Water Day, March 22.

Groundwater Threats: Michigan Should Act with Urgency to Pass a State Law to Control TCE

The many chemical contaminants in Michigan’s groundwater, coupled with the lack of environmentally sustainable federal and state chemical policies, continue to put Michigan at risk. An example is trichloroethylene (TCE), a cancer-causing manufactured chemical that has contaminated groundwater at more than 300 locations in Michigan. In 2020, Minnesota became the first state in the country to outlaw many remaining uses of TCE. Michigan should follow suit.

A Grounding in Groundwater, Climate, and Water Justice

FLOW and the Great Lakes are healthier and stronger because of the help we have received from interns specializing in law, policy, and communications during our 10 years of keeping water public and protected. Case in point, Alex Theophilus, who has served since January as a policy intern at FLOW. Currently studying environmental geography and sociology at Colgate University in Hamilton, New York, Alex grew up in Leelanau County and the Traverse City area before graduating from Traverse City Central High School in 2018. We asked Alex to share his thoughts about his experience as a FLOW intern in a year unlike any other as the COVID-19 pandemic continued its grip on the globe. Here are Alex’s responses to the questions we posed.