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E-M:/ Re: Granholm gets mixed reviews

Title: Re: Granholm gets mixed reviews
Like many on Enviro-Mich, I was overjoyed with the court's decision in the Ice Mountain case, but apprehensive about what might happen to negate it. I was surprised and appalled when DEQ was the instrument of that negation, even if temporarily. However, as a whole I think Steve Chester is doing a good job and laying the groundwork to do an even better job in the future. I read his statement, and while I don't agree with it, I respect the sincerity of his actions. So I appreciate Fred Cowles' urging environmentalists not to overreact and to take a wait-and-see approach.

But -- and this is the main reason for this posting -- there is a HUGE difference between public water uses and private industrial uses, particularly those which turn the water into the actual commodity they're selling. This has come up frequently with the case, for example, people citing statistics about how much water the City of Big Rapids uses, and I think it's way off the mark. Any sound policy will have to make the distinction between public-welfare uses of water and uses that result in private, individual gain. I'm not saying that municipal groundwater withdrawals shouldn't be approached on an ecosystem basis and decisions made based on what is best for the whole watershed. But I do think that failure to see the difference between those two uses shows muddled thinking, and the two must be considered separately in order to develop effective policy.

By the way, Ice Mountain wouldn't be interested in this if there weren't a strong market for water bottled in plastic. As others on this list have said, a step in the right direction would be to stop drinking bottled water -- of any brand -- and urge others you know to do the same.

Cynthia Price
>From: fred cowles <fecowles@yahoo.com>
>To: Enviro-Mich <enviro-mich@great-lakes.net>
>Subject: Re: E-M:/ Re:Granholm gets mixed reviews
>Date: Sun, Jan 4, 2004, 11:42 PM

>Enviro-Mich message from fred cowles <fecowles@yahoo.com>
> Mr. Abel,
> DEQ Director Steve Chester posted his rationale for
> supporting a stay of the order to cease operation on
> the DEQ website:
> DEQ is not taking sides on the merits of the issue,
>just to allow operation at a reduced rate while the
>issue is decided. There were threats from some in the
>legislature to weaken the environmental statutes to
>allow continuation, and DEQ felt compelled to
>effectively oppose such action. Much is at stake in
>this case. While 400 gallons per minute at this site
>is only a skirmish, the precedents set in resolving
>the case will affect water users state-wide quite
>profoundly. DEQ has committed to take a leadership
>position in forging the resolution. At stake are not
>only industrial water users like food and beverage
>producers, but public water supplies as well.
> ===== Fred Cowles
>> --- Matthew Abel <attorneyabel@comcast.net> wrote:
>> On Dec 31, 2003, at 11:42 PM, fred cowles wrote:
>> > ...There is much more at stake in the ice
>> > mountain issue
>> > than it might appear. The governor's selected
>> > path
>> > has the potential to lead to much greater good
>> > state-wide than winning a minor skirmish in
>> > Mecosta county.
>> >
>> Mr. Cowles:
>> Can you explain what the Governor's selected path
>> might be, and how it
>> has the potential to lead to much greater good?
>> To me, it just seems that she's siding with
>> (foreign) corporations
>> instead of citizens.
>> How can failing to stop Nestle/Perrier/Ice Mountain
>> be good for Michigan?
>> Matt Abel
>> West Bloomfield
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