Midwestern farms suffocating Gulf of Mexico ecosystems

Fertilizer runoff from seasonal heavy rainfall on Midwestern farms is traveling down the Mississippi River and creating a “hypoxic zone,” or low oxygen zone in the Gulf of Mexico, a recent study by Iowa State University scientists warns.

A 22-year mission to restore a Pennsylvania bay

After more than two decades of cleanup and community efforts, Lake Erie’s Presque Isle Bay became the second heavily contaminated place in the United States to be removed from the Great Lakes toxic waters list.

Michigan may authorize new uses for toxic coal ash

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.

Campaign targets pollution in watershed

It’s safe to say most of us take for granted that when we turn on our faucets, clean water comes out. But where does our drinking water come from? How clean is it? And how much responsibility do we, as individuals, have to ensure that our water stays clean?