Current State

Every Tuesday the Current State public affairs radio program on WKAR in East Lansing runs an environmental story in partnership with Great Lakes Echo. The stories also run on the Echo site and are archived here.

Recent Stories

Month in review: Detroit water shut-offs, carp and pipelines

People protesting the shut off water to some Detroit citizens and businesses.
Image: Flickr- Light Brigading

At the end of each month we check in with Echo commentator and journalist Gary Wilson for updates on environmental stories from around the basin. For today’s Great Lakes Month in Review, Gary discusses Detroit water shutoffs and the latest legal news on the Asian Carp situation. This segment is a feature of a partnership between Great Lakes Echo and WKAR’s Current State public affairs program. supported by Michigan State University’s Knight Center for Environmental Journalism.   Continue Reading →

Filed under: , , , , , ,

Mosquitoes triple

Current State logo

If you live in Michigan it seems like every summer is a time to complain about the mosquitoes being really bad this year, but how bad are they, really? Current State talked with Ned Walker about this year’s mosquito crop and some of the issues connected to mosquito-borne illness. He’s a professor in MSU’s Department of Entomology and the Department of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics. Continue Reading →

Filed under: , , , , ,

Michigan may authorize new uses for toxic coal ash

Current State logo

Michigan may authorize new uses for toxic coal ash by Great Lakes Echo

One of the bills that cleared the Michigan legislature this session was a provision that allows certain bio-waste materials to be re-used for beneficial purposes. These substances include things like cement kiln dust, wood pulp and coal ash. Coal ash is the leftover residue from coal burned by electric power plants. The bill permits coal ash to be used in road construction, but it may also be used in agriculture as a fertilizer supplement, causing some environmental advocates to become concerned. Current State’s Kevin Lavery speaks with Republican State Representative Wayne Schmidt, the bill’s main sponsor, who strongly states that coal ash is completely safe and does not pose any environmental threats. Continue Reading →

Filed under: , , , , ,

Addressing challenges of urban watersheds

Current State logo

Drain Commissioner On Clean Water Challenges, Opportunities WKAR by Great Lakes Echo

Pat Lindemann has served as the Drain Commissioner of Ingham County for 21 years. He’s a Lansing native who’s spent his entire life in the area. As Drain Commissioner, Lindemann’s responsible for the operation of Ingham County storm drains and related issues including lake levels and soil erosion. Lindemann has earned a reputation as an environmental advocate. That’s put him at odds with developers, entrepreneurs and municipal officials eagerly pursuing business development. Continue Reading →

Filed under: , , , , ,

Finding a balance in Lake Huron’s fishery

Current State logo

About a decade ago, Lake Huron’s fishing was not very abundant because of a steep decline in fish numbers. To see how the lake is doing now, Current State’s Melissa Benmark spoke with David Fielder, Fisheries Research Biologist for the Department of Natural Resources and a doctoral student at Michigan State University. Fielder explained that the decline ten years ago was due to ecological changes after the invasion of zebra mussels, quagga mussels and a higher predator abundance. Continue Reading →

Filed under: , , , , ,