Author Archives: CMU Public Radio News

Brawl over ballast water regulations

ballast waterEvery year, hundreds of commercial ships make their way through the St. Lawrence seaway, taking on and letting out water to maintain stability as they load and unload cargo. This ballast water is regulated to prevent the spread of invasive species, but there is some disagreement about who should be in charge of those regulations.
Continue reading

Great Lakes ice cover remains low this winter

IceCoverAvg1973_2016_mediumLast week, 15 percent of the Great Lakes was covered in ice. That’s the highest level of ice cover recorded so far this winter and far less than the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s 64 percent prediction. A lack of ice could have lasting implications for this year and beyond.
Continue reading

Photographer reveals “ghosts” of Lake Erie

lake_erie_2_mediumDave Sandford is has been a professional photographer for 20 years. He’s based in London, Ontario -– about a half hour from Lake Erie. Over the years he’s dabbled in several genres of photography, from sports to wildlife, but says he always returns to the Great Lakes in his spare time.
Continue reading

Experts say we need gravel mines

IMG_0761Dave and Becky Sherwood operate a taxidermy business out of their home in Richland Township. It’s tucked back in the woods, just a tenth of a mile from a proposed gravel mine. Becky Sherwood says a lot of things about the project from Top Grade Site Management worry her. She says her property’s value will likely go down. And the life they’ve created out here in the woods, just won’t be the same.
Continue reading

Isabella county women travel to Standing Rock

For much of 2016, people from around the country gathered to protest the Dakota Access Pipeline being built near the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation in North Dakota.

In December, it appeared the standoff between protesters and law enforcement had come to an end. The U-S Army Corps of Engineers denied the oil company the permit it needed to build in the area.

Some protesters however, are refusing to pack up and go home. They say they don’t trust Dakota Access Pipeline and don’t believe this is the end of the ordeal…Among the skeptical are two Mount Pleasant residents. They recently  returned from a holiday visit to Standing Rock. Sarah Adams spoke with them shortly before they left.

Jennie Jones and Lauren Richards have been collecting supplies for over a month to take to the protesters in North Dakota. Richards says the recent turn of events hasn’t changed a thing in her mind. Richards and Jones have packed their cars with supplies to help get the protesters through the winter…things like food, cold weather sleeping bags and small propane heaters.

Richards says since she posted about the trip on social media, donations of supplies and money have been coming in from all over. “People have been so generous….we’ve received some items personally from people who just know us and wanted to hand stuff off. A lot of monetary donations that’s been really helpful so we’re able to purchase some other supplies”.

Richards says even though officials like Standing Rock Sioux tribal chairman have asked protesters to go home, friends in North Dakota are telling her the protest is far from over.  “We were a little concerned at first thinking we wouldn’t be welcomed or needed and that was going to be ok if that was the case however we do have a friend named John who has been out there a couple of times now. I just spoke to him a few days ago and he said they still need people and he’s connected with a lot of the tribal leaders and elders and he’s getting firsthand information. So we trust him. We trust what he says”

 Jennie Jones says she and Richards are preparing the best they can based on what they’re being told and what they’ve seen in media coverage.”It looks really cold and blizzard, a lot of wind so I’m expecting first of all, the cold, intense cold”.

 Adams: “As someone living in Michigan, why is something happening in North Dakota important to you?”  

Jones:  “Because we’re all connected. I think that’s something that people are starting to understand and realize if they haven’t yet. We really are very all connected. If we want to see things change, we need to be the ones to do it. We can no longer just sit back and watch things pass us by. It’s not the time for that. I feel really strongly in my heart that Standing Rock is the beginning of many, many, many more things and instances where people will have the opportunity to stand up and be heard. I feel people from all over the country banding together and wanting to help in some way and this is what’s happening and so it’s important to do because of that and because we can no longer be silent.”

Jones and Richards tell me future trips to help the protesters will happen if they are needed.

 

 

What’s icy, metal and two miles long? A Great Lakes ice boom

Ice Boom Installation, delivery of Boom strings to harbor break wall from storage area. December 7, 2015. Photographer: Paul Pasquarello.

Ice Boom Installation, delivery of Boom strings to harbor break wall from storage area. December 7, 2015. Photographer: Paul Pasquarello.

The deep freeze has arrived in Great Lakes states and that means one thing: It’s time for the Lake Erie/Niagara River Ice Boom.
Continue reading

Kalamazoo shooter asks judge to suppress statements

gavelLawyers for Kalamazoo accused mass shooter Jason Dalton will ask a judge to suppress some of Dalton’s statements. The Kalamazoo circuit court has set a hearing on that request for February 10. Dalton is accused of killing six people and seriously wounding two others during a shooting spree last February.

Kalamazoo Assistant Prosecutor Jeffrey Williams says his office has a “very strong” case.

We certainly want to present all the evidence that we possibly have for the jury, so that’s why we’re going to argue to keep those statements in and we hope the judge will make a decision we agree with.

After his arrest Dalton told police the ride-hailing app Uber had possessed him. The prosecutor’s office says it expects the court to set a trial date after the hearing in February.