Blog Posts

Blog posts by FLOW team and guest writers

FLOW to U.S. Army Corps: Oil Tunnel in the Great Lakes Is Not a Solution

Editor’s note: The following are comments made by FLOW Deputy Director Kelly Thayer on September 8, 2022, in St. Ignace, Michigan, at a public meeting of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Army Corps). The Army Corps, Detroit District, held the session to help set the scope of its environmental impact statement (EIS) study of a… Read more »

The Sea Lamprey Centennial: From Ruin to Rehabilitation

Photo: Sea lamprey have a large oral disk filled with sharp, horn-shaped teeth that surround a toothed tongue. Many Great Lakes invasions of non-native species begin unnoticed—but not so with one of the most destructive invasions of all, the attack of the sea lamprey. The scourge of the Great Lakes fishery, the lamprey is believed to have appeared… Read more »

A Modest Proposal: The Biggest State Park in America

When Michiganders want to point out where a specific location lies in the state, we often raise our hands and point at a spot somewhere on our palms.  Indeed, our identity is tied up in nicknames like The Mitten State. But the legal boundaries of Michigan look nothing like a mitten or a hand. They… Read more »

Progress and Hope for the Environment

Ten years to save the planet from climate change. PFAS, microplastics, and invasive species. Wetland destruction and failing, polluting septic systems.  Sometimes it seems as though the only environmental news is bad news. Here’s an antidote, borne in a glass half-full. Great Lakes Piping Plover An endearing, small shorebird that nests on Great Lakes beaches,… Read more »

State of the Great Lakes

Is More of the Same Good Enough for the Great Lakes? Give the U.S. EPA and its Canadian counterpart points for recycling. When they released the 2022 State of the Great Lakes report last week, they offered the same characterization as in previous reports: overall, the Great Lakes are fair and unchanging. Merriam-Webster defines “fair”… Read more »

Jake Bright to Swim the Manitou Passage to Benefit FLOW, North Manitou Light Keepers

Editor’s note: This is a FLOW media release issued August 3, 2022. Members of the media can reach open water swimmer Jake Bright at, 347-204-7576; FLOW Executive Director Liz Kirkwood at, 570-872-4956; and NMLK President Daniel Oginsky at, 810-360-3768. The event’s fundraising page can be found here at GoFundMe or TRAVERSE… Read more »

Introducing Kelli Fitzpatrick: FLOW Intern, Writer, Environmental Optimist

This summer, Kelli Fitzpatrick has assisted FLOW in researching and writing about the threat of water commercialization and the ethics of water stewardship. Originally from Beaverton, Michigan, she now lives in Iowa, where she attends graduate school at Iowa State University. We asked her a few questions about her background, plans, and writing interests.

Supreme Court Decision: Let the Country Burn

Our newly constituted Supreme Court acted more like “supreme rulers” than an independent judiciary, choosing politics and their fixation on narrow legal ideology over the urgent need to reduce greenhouse gases under a realistic and fair reading of federal law—the Clean Air Act, writes Jim Olson.