Freshwater Weekly November 15, 2019

Posted on November 15, 2019 by

November 15, 2019

This week:  Demolition in Detroit Receives Scathing Audit Report +Water Democracy Forum Friday Night at University of Toledo + Lake Levels Swing from Extreme Lows to Record Highs + Flint Teen Water Testing Featured by C.S. Mott Foundation + Wisconsin Wetlands Celebrates 50-years

Demolition in Detroit Receives Scathing Audit Report 

Improper demolition techniques likely released asbestos and other toxins in Detroit as a result of poorly managed demolition according to an audit report of the program.  The audit report released on Monday delayed approval by Detroit City Council of a $250 million bond proposal put forward by Mayor Duggan for more demolition.  Contaminated dirt may have been used to fill the demolition sites raising more concerns about environmental health impacts.

Water Democracy Forum Friday Night at University of Toledo

A Water & Democracy Forum will be held this Friday, November 15 from 5-7 pm at the University of Toledo, Gilham Hall, Room 5300.  The forum will focus on the intersection of water and democracy such as access to, affordability, and quality of drinking water. The event features three speakers:

  • Dale Snauwaert, Professor in Department of Educational Studies at University of Toledo; does research in Ethics, Social and Political Philosophy and Educational Theory.

  • Monica Lewis Patrick, Co-Founder & President of We the People of Detroit, is actively engaged in almost every struggle on behalf of Detroit residents.

  • Peter Hammer, Professor at Wayne State University Law School; director of the Damon J. Keith Center for Civil Rights, which is dedicated to promoting the educational, economic and political empowerment of under-represented communities in urban areas and to ensuring that the phrase “equal justice under law” applies to all members of society.

Toledo City Council Member, Nick Komives will deliver the opening remarks for the forum. Sponsors of the event include: Freshwater Future, Junction Coalition, and the University of Toledo

Lake Levels Swing from Extreme Lows to Record Highs

All five Great Lakes experienced high lake levels this year, with record highs achieved for Erie, Ontario, and Huron. Lake Superior tied its record high and Lake Michigan level fell just short of a record high. It was just five years ago when the Great Lakes were experiencing record low levels. These dynamic fluctuations make shoreline areas even more vulnerable to flooding and erosion.  A warmer atmosphere as a result of climate change has resulted in a 10 percent rise of rain and snow in the Great Lakes region between 1901 and 2015.

Flint Teen Water Testing Featured by C.S. Mott Foundation

From left to right, Anayla Gray, Marquise Willis, Daryl Sparks and Naijha Friend are shown at a Flint home where they collected water samples. 

The Flint teen water testing program collected over 160 water samples in 2018 providing residents trusted information about the quality of their water. Funding from the C.S. Mott Foundation supported the pilot project and Phase II, construction of water testing lab at the Flint Development Center.

Wisconsin Wetlands Celebrates 50-years 

Congratulations to Wisconsin Wetlands for their impactful work over the past 50-years to educate and promote how wetlands are solutions to Wisconsin’s water management challenges!

PFAS Test Kits – GIFT a KIT!
Freshwater Future believes everyone has a right to know what is in their drinking water, regardless of what’s in their wallets. We have partnered with the University of Michigan Biological Station and other donors to offer PFAS testing for homes on private wells at reduced rates. You can help make our kits even more accessible by selecting Gift a Kit at check out. We’ll use your donation to send a kit to someone else as part of our “Pay What You Can Program”. Get (or gift) your test kits today!


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Images courtesy of Steven Huyser-Honig,
West Grand Boulevard Collaborative, & Yellow Dog Watershed Preserve.