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GLIN==> White House Conference on Cooperative Conservation
- Subject: GLIN==> White House Conference on Cooperative Conservation
- From: Elizabeth LaPorte <firstname.lastname@example.org>
- Date: Tue, 23 Aug 2005 15:41:45 -0400
- Delivered-to: email@example.com
- Delivered-to: firstname.lastname@example.org
- List-name: GLIN-Announce
Title: White House Conference on Cooperative
The following news
release was produced jointly by DTE, Michigan Sea Grant, the Detroit
River International Wildlife Refuge, and the Downriver Linked
conservation initiatives to be recognized at
Conference on Cooperative Conservation
DETROIT - Over the past several years, a unique
coalition of community, business, education and governmental groups
have quietly endeavored to revitalize the Detroit River and its
surrounding areas. As a result of this collaboration, the
32-mile waterway that connects Lake St. Clair and Lake Erie, once
neglected and polluted, has become an inviting place for wildlife and
a destination for the public. The partnerships that have made
this transformation possible will receive national recognition at the
White House Conference on Cooperative Conservation in St. Louis Aug.
The Detroit River
initiative is among 37 conservation projects nationwide that will be
highlighted at the conference. An overview of the initiative
will be presented by Mary Bohling, environmental planner, DTE Energy;
Barry Murray, Southeast Michigan extension agent, Michigan Sea Grant;
Anita Twardesky, co-chair, Downriver Linked Greenways; and John
Hartig, manager, Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge.
The four represent a cross-section of the many organizations that have
been deeply involved in the revitalization of the Detroit
On a recent visit to
Detroit, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Steve
Johnson praised the work done by these organizations to restore and
protect the Detroit River watershed. According to Johnson, these
community-based public and private partnerships have made the Detroit
River once again a gathering place for wildlife and families and will
serve as a collaborative model for the rest of the nation at the White
House Conference on Cooperative Conservation.
convened by the White House Council on Environmental Quality, will
focus on promoting cooperative conservation through partnerships with
state, tribal and local governments, communities, private for-profit
and non-profit organizations, and private citizens. It
will bring together interested participants and decision makers who
can advance cooperative conservation and identify ideas for future
conservation and environmental policies and initiatives.
"We are honored to
be invited to the conference and delighted to have the opportunity to
share our achievements with our colleagues from across the country.
We're anxious to learn from them as well," said Bohling.
"This conference is about collaboration, and from our experiences
with the Detroit River, that truly is the way you make things
Some of the numerous
partnerships and projects that have helped revitalize the Detroit
River area include:
- The Detroit
River International Wildlife Refuge. Located along the
lower Detroit River and western shoreline of Lake Erie, the 2,400-acre
Refuge contains islands, coastal wetlands, marshes, shoals and unique
uplands, and includes four DTE Energy facilities that are certified
wildlife sites, due in large part to the conservation efforts of DTE
Energy volunteers. The company recently donated $100,000 to help
build a gateway at the refuge that will include a visitor center,
wildlife viewing stations, hiking trails and more.
- The Downriver
Linked Greenways. This organization has raised more than $10
million for trail construction and has built nearly 15 miles of trails
since 1999. It has completed a five-year master plan, and worked
with the National Park Service to create a signage
- The Greater
Detroit American Heritage River Initiative of the Metropolitan Affairs
Coalition. The initiative raised $43 million for projects
involving environmental stewardship, economic development, and
celebrating history and culture.
- The Detroit
Riverfront Conservancy. The group raised more than $100
million that leveraged millions of dollars more to build the 3.5-mile
Detroit RiverWalk, one of the country's largest urban waterfront
- The Community
Foundation for Southeastern Michigan GreenWays Initiative.
This effort provided $25 million and leveraged another $65 million for
communities to build greenways.
"Today, because of
these partnerships, the river is cleaner. Bald eagles have
returned to the watershed and lake sturgeon are spawning again.
Peregrine falcons have come back from the brink of extinction and
common terns are recovering," said Hartig. "Children and
families are visiting wildlife areas and learning how to become the
next generation of conservation stewards.
"The more than
five million people who live in the Detroit metropolitan area now have
opportunities to experience nature they would not have had," he
added. "Collaborative conservation has made a difference in
our quality of life and, bottom line, that's given communities and
businesses here a tremendous competitive advantage."
# # #
information, members of the media may
Michigan Sea Grant
Communications Program Director &
Education Program Co-Leader, Michigan Sea Grant College
Communications Director, Univ. of
Michigan School of Natural Resources & Environment
Phone: (734) 647-0767, Fax: (734)
Address: 401 E. Liberty St., TCF
- Suite 330, Ann Arbor, MI 48104-2298