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E-M:/ granholm-cherry propose clean water corps, state Riverkeepers
- Subject: E-M:/ granholm-cherry propose clean water corps, state Riverkeepers
- From: "Dave Dempsey" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
- Date: Fri, 25 Oct 2002 17:42:21 -0400
- Delivered-To: email@example.com
- Delivered-To: firstname.lastname@example.org
- List-Name: Enviro-Mich
- Reply-To: "Dave Dempsey" <email@example.com>
Enviro-Mich message from "Dave Dempsey" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, October 25, 2002
ANN ARBOR – Democratic Lieutenant Governor nominee State Senator John
Cherry (D-Clio) today said that the Granholm-Cherry administration would
make keeping Michigan water clean and safe a top priority.
Senator Cherry appeared at a Riverkeeper event today with Robert F. Kennedy
Jr. Kennedy is in Michigan to announce the creation of a new Detroit
Riverkeeper Program that will formulate and implement plans to clean up and
protect all the waterways that feed into the Detroit River and nearby Lake
“Our environmental plan focuses on developing a comprehensive water use
strategy and protecting Michigan’s watersheds,” Cherry said. “We support the
Detroit Riverkeeper program, and look forward to working with the
organization in implementing initiatives to protect and restore our rivers.”
The Granholm-Cherry plan includes:
· Creating a Michigan Clean Water Corps. The Granholm-Cherry administration
will work with volunteers to establish a comprehensive statewide clean
· Protecting and restoring Michigan’s rivers with a new Riverkeepers program
supporting local watershed initiatives.
· Cleaning up the toxins left by past industrial activities. The Great Lakes
contain 42 toxic hot spots or “Areas of Concern” – 14 of those are in
Michigan waters. The Environmental Protection Agency has designated these
areas for clean up of toxic industrial waste, but the current administration
has not made any progress to date on securing federal funding.
· Protecting rivers and streams with new initiative under Michigan’s
nationally recognized Natural Rivers Act. Not a single new river has been
designated under the Engler-Posthumus administration.
The Detroit Riverkeeper program has been licensed as the 89th member of the
International Waterkeeper Alliance, of which Kennedy is the co-founder and
president. A Waterkeeper program is an environmental “neighborhood watch”
program protecting communities and the waters they depend on. There are 94
programs licensed nationally to date.
“The work of Robert F. Kennedy Jr. and the Waterkeeper Alliance is
known around the world for leading the fight for cleaner water,” Cherry
said. “We welcome their interest in the Detroit River and Lake Erie, and we
feel their efforts and our environmental priorities are a perfect match.”
The new Detroit program joins three existing licensed Michigan
Waterkeeper programs launched at the grassroots level in the state – the St.
Clair Channelkeeper, the Tip of the Mitt Waterkeeper, and the Greater
Traverse Baykeeper program. Efforts to establish future waterkeeper programs
are underway in a number of the state’s 46 watersheds, most notably for the
Kalamazoo, Muskegon, and Grand rivers.
“We applaud the Michigan watershed protection groups that have created
these innovative and effective programs,” Cherry said. “Our campaign
believes that a statewide program is critical to ensure that all watersheds
are fully protected. We look forward to the opportunity to work with the
national Waterkeeper Alliance and Michigan community and environmental
leaders to shape our new statewide program.”
“We must encourage more public participation in protecting the
environment,” Cherry added. “The Engler-Posthumus administration has removed
public input in the environmental policymaking process. One of our top
priorities is to restore citizen participation and commissions in the state
departments charged with environmental protection.”
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