ENVIRONMENTAL STEWARDSHIP: Michigan residents worry a lack of environmental education threatens the state’s defining feature, the Great Lakes, a recent study said. Focus groups identified environmental threats for coastal communities and called for education on how to be better stewards of the lakes. Concerns varied by lake, but the most common themes were rising water levels and lack of environmental education. Other concerns: beach erosion, pollution, public access, invasive species and lake user safety. We talk to an MSU expert and the Great Lakes Stewardship Initiative executive director. By Taylor Haelterman. FOR HOLLAND, MANISTEE, OCEANA, BENZIE, TRAVERSE CITY, HARBOR SPRINGS, PETOSKEY, CHEBOYGAN, ALCONA, MARQUETTE, ST. IGNACE, SAULT STE. MARIE, BAY MILLS, MONROE AND ALL POINTS.
FISH DATA: U-M researchers want volunteers to transcribe paper records on fish observations that date back more than a century. The historical data from lake surveys will help scientists understand how climate change and other factors have affected fish in Michigan lakes. The records report characteristics of fish communities, food sources, plant life, water conditions, human development and lake mapping. For news and outdoors sections. By Chioma Lewis. FOR ALL POINTS.
LAKE TEMPERATURE: The Great Lakes region should expect shorter winters, according to a long-term deep water temperature study of Lake Michigan. Abrupt changes in water temperatures in the Great Lakes would have profound effects on the region’s ecosystems, and fish populations could shrink as a result, a new study says. Scientists from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory in Ann Arbor explain. By Brandon Chew. FOR HOLLAND, BENZIE, OCEANA, LUDINGTON, MANISTEE, CHEBOYGAN, TRAVERSE CITY, PETOSKEY, LEELANAU, HARBOR SPRINGS, ALCONA, MONROE, SAULT STE. MARIE, MARQUETTE AND ALL POINTS.
JOURNALISM & DEMOCRACY COMMENTARY: After four years of bitter verbal abuse, baseless attacks and threats from the highest officials, it is reassuring to hear a ringing recognition of the critical role the news media play in our country. Attorney Gen. Nessel tells CNS correspondents,”There’s no job out there, no career, that could be more important. Sadly and dangerously, some Americans have forgotten or deliberately ignored that lesson rooted in the First Amendment and taught in high school civics and history classes. For news and editorial pages. By Eric Freedman. FOR ALL POINTS.
MODEL UN: Central Michigan University will host its annual Model United Nations for high school students April 9-11 — virtually rather than in person because of the pandemic. MSU and U-M recently did the same. Participants debate world issues and crises, real, historic and imaginary, from Jurassic Park and Dungeons and Dragons to international arms and the Holy Roman Empire.A Dearborn teacher says the online format made the conference more accessible and affordable for her students. By Sheldon Krause. FOR DETROIT, LANSING CITY LIMITS & ALL POINTS.
BASEBALL: Michigan’s minor league baseball teams are coming to bat for a season with pandemic-related restrictions, including a seating capacity cap and cashless food concessions. We hear about the West Michigan Whitecaps, in Comstock Park, and the Lansing Lugnuts. For new sand sports sections. By Samuel Blatchford. FOR GRAND RAPIDS BUSINESS, GREENVILLE, HOLLAND LANSING CITY PULSE AND ALL POINTS.
ENDANGERED SPECIES: The DNR’s Wildlife Division and the Michigan Wildlife Conservancy in Bath are pushing efforts to conserve and protect the state’s threatened and endangered species. In a success story, the Kirtland’s warbler, which breeds in the Huron Manistee National Forest, was removed from the list in 2019. Meanwhile, scientists are trying to learn more about the least shrew. By Kirtsen Rintelmann. FOR MICHIGAN FARM NEWS, CADILLAC, CRAWFORD COUNTY, MANISTEE, , CRAWFORD COUNTY, LAKE COUNTY, BIG RAPIDS, LUDINGTON, ALCONA AND ALL POINTS.
OPTOMETRY TELEHEALTH: There’s controversy over a bill to authorize telehealth renewal exams for contact lens wearers. Supporters like the Mackinac Center for Public Policy say it would be good because it would increase access to optometric care. Critics, such as the Michigan Optometric Association, an Owosso optometrist and AARP say it could make it harder to diagnose eye and other diseases. The lead sponsor is from Polkton Township, and cosponsors include lawmakers from Gaylord, Lake City, Marion Township, Wyoming, Springport, Casco Township, Niles, Utica, Monroe, Shelby Township and Portland. By Kristia Potsema. FOR HOLLAND, GRAND RAPIDS BUSINESS, IONIA, CADILLAC, MONROE, DETROIT, LANSING CITY PULSE, MONTMORENCY, TRAVERSE CITY, FOWLERVILLE AND ALL POINTS.
FEDERAL SPENDING: Michigan ranks in the middle of states based on their reliance on federal money, a new analysis shows. That includes a lot of federal dollars in pandemic-related relief. We talk to a Northern Michigan University political scientist, the Department of Technology, Management & Budget and the Mackinac Center for Public Policy, in Midland. By Sheldon Krause. FOR MARQUETTE, SAULT STE. MARIE, CORP! GRAND RAPIDS BUSINESS AND ALL POINTS.
LAKE HURON WRECKAGE. A World War II fighter piloted by a Tuskegee Airman and lost over Lake Huron in a training accident will be recovered and displayed at Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary. It’s one of about 200 military aircraft that disappeared into the Great Lakes during the war. An underwater archeologist explains how the wreckage was found. The archeological director of the National Museum of the Great Lakes discusses the recovery of a sailing vessel that sank in Lake Erie in 1829. By Yue Jiang. FOR ALCONA, CHEBOYGAN, SAULT STE. MARIE, MONROE, MARQUETTE, OCEANA, BENZIE, LEELANAU, CHEBOYGAN, TRAVERSE CITY, PETOSKEY, HOLLAND, LUDINGTON, MANISTEE, HARBOR SPRINGS, STE. IGNACE AND ALL POINTS.