Long-sought Great Lakes projects get funding under new law
A project that will boost Great Lakes shipping in a crucial bottleneck and another intended to protect the lakes from invasive carp will get big funding increases under the Biden administration's infrastructure package, officials said Thursday. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers said it would pump $479 million into construction of a new navigational lock at Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan, expanding a complex that enables vessels to haul bulk cargo between Lake Superior and the other Great Lakes.news.yahoo.com
Authorities begin identifying Michigan plane crash victims
The four people who died in a plane crash on Michigan's Beaver Island included a real estate agent and a couple who were planning to open a winery and vineyard there, authorities said Sunday. The plane crashed Saturday west of Mackinaw City, killing four of the five people on board. Lt. William Church of the Charlevoix County Sheriff’s Office identified three of the deceased as Kate Leese and Adam Kendall of Beaver Island, and Mike Perdue of Gaylord.news.yahoo.com
4 people killed in plane crash on Michigan’s Beaver Island
Four of five people on a commuter plane died Saturday afternoon when it crashed on an island in Lake Michigan, authorities said. The plane went down at an airport on Beaver Island, located west of Mackinaw City, according to the Charlevoix County Sheriff’s Office. The identities of the people on the plane weren’t immediately released, and there was no initial indication of the circumstances surrounding the crash.news.yahoo.com
Benton Harbor's lead pipe issues reminiscent of Flint
For decades the low-income, majority Black community of Benton Harbor — less than two hours away from Chicago on the southeastern shore of Lake Michigan — has been ravaged by a litany of woes shared with many other once-thriving American cities. Now the water isn’t safe to drink, either. A top state official acknowledged last month that residents should drink and cook with bottled water, three years after testing required under a then new Michigan law revealed high levels of brain-damaging lead in tap water.chicagotribune.com
The Great Lakes are warmer than they’ve ever been in early November: Why that’s a problem in several ways
Some parts of the Northern Great Lakes region were greeted by their first significant snowfall of the season earlier this week, but not even the arrival of the fluffy white stuff could mask these historic times for the Great Lakes themselves.
Amsterdam dance music festival returns after pandemic restrictions
Amsterdam Dance Event (ADE) has started hosting its five-day dance music festival after the Dutch government lifted restrictions on the entertainment sector, as well as clubs and bars. The event has been scaled down compared to previous years, while measures are in place to prevent the spread of Covid-19, including on-site testing.news.yahoo.com
Chicago Bears legend Steve ‘Mongo’ McMichael accepts first-ever ALS Courage Award at Soldier Field: ‘One of these days, we’ll cure this’
During the 20th anniversary of the Les Turner ALS Foundation’s Walk for Life, Bears legend Steve McMichael accepted its inaugural Courage Award before vowing that “one of these days, we’ll cure this.”chicagotribune.com
I took the high-speed ferry across Lake Michigan -- and it made for the coolest experience
Maybe you’re in Michigan, with family in Wisconsin (or vice versa). Or perhaps you’re planning some sort of trip across state lines, and you came across the idea of using a ferry to save some time around the Great Lakes.
Pregnant woman found dead in Lake Michigan identified via dental records as Chicago resident, 19
A 19-year-old Chicago resident has been identified as the pregnant woman found dead in Lake Michigan earlier this month, the Lake County sheriff’s office said in a news release. The body was recovered from the lake Aug. 15 after a fisherman saw it floating in the water about three miles southeast of Waukegan Harbor. The woman who died was identified by the Lake County Coroner’s Office this ...news.yahoo.com
Environmental racism, unregulated chemicals, staffing shortages among the many challenges facing whomever Biden picks to lead the EPA in the Midwest
Candidates include Debra Shore, an elected commissioner at the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District, the agency that manages sewage and storm runoff in Chicago and Cook County, and Micah Ragland, a utility executive who helped lead the response to the Flint, Michigan, water crisis.chicagotribune.com
An estimated 300 trillion invasive mussels blanket Lake Michigan. Eradication may be impossible, but small-scale removal efforts could be the answer
At Good Harbor Reef in Michigan, researchers test control methods ranging from manual removal to starvation to a bacteria that targets their digestive systems.chicagotribune.com
Iowa man with guns at Chicago hotel 'didn’t mean to startle'
An Iowa man arrested by Chicago police for having guns and ammunition in his hotel room overlooking a Lake Michigan beach told officers he “didn’t mean to startle anyone" and simply forgot to remove the firearms from a bag while packing for a trip to the city, police video shows. Keegan Casteel's arrest for having a rifle with a laser sight and a handgun in his hotel room during the July Fourth holiday weekend prompted Mayor Lori Lightfoot and police Superintendent David Brown to suggest he may have intended to fire on Navy Pier crowds from his hotel window. Casteel's attorney has said those remarks were baseless and spurred sensational media coverage, while his client was in Chicago to propose to his girlfriend, not to launch a mass attack.news.yahoo.com
In Lake Michigan’s first national sanctuary, nearly 100 possible shipwrecks could reveal tales of the superhighways of the Great Lakes
962 square miles of Lake Michigan will soon be designated as the Wisconsin Shipwreck Coast National Marine Sanctuary — containing the remains of 36 known shipwrecks and as many as 59 more that have yet to be found.chicagotribune.com
Man arrested for rifle at Chicago hotel makes bond, proposes
An Iowa man who was in custody in Chicago after police found a rifle with a laser sight in a hotel room that overlooks a Lake Michigan beach during the July 4th weekend made bond and then proposed to his girlfriend upon his release. Authorities say a member of the cleaning staff at the W Hotel told police on Sunday they observed the rifle, a handgun and ammunition in the room held by Keegan Casteel, 32. The window had a view of Ohio Street Beach and Navy Pier, a major tourist attraction.news.yahoo.com
Nonprofit: Number of drownings in Great Lakes jumps in 2021
More drownings have been reported in the Great Lakes so far in 2021 than by this time last year, prompting officials to urge swimmers to practice water safety measures. As of July 2, there were 32 drownings in the Great Lakes, compared to 25 as of July 4, 2020, according to data collected by the Great Lakes Surf Rescue Project. The nonprofit annually tracks drownings in the Great Lakes and recently issued a warning about a summer spike in deaths.news.yahoo.com
Company defies Michigan governor's order to close pipeline
An Upper Midwestern oil pipeline continued operating Wednesday, despite a shutdown demand from Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer that the operator warned could lead to fuel disruptions similar to those resulting from a cyberattack on an East Coast system. Whitmer ordered Line 5 closed last November because of the potential for a spill in a channel linking two of the Great Lakes. As her May 12 deadline arrived, Canadian pipeline company Enbridge said only the federal government has regulatory authority over its operations.news.yahoo.com
‘Moderate to heavy rain,’ high waves, 60 mph wind gusts in Chicago area Thursday may cause lakefront flooding into Friday
Beginning early Friday and lasting until about 4 a.m., “a brief period of gusts of 55-60 mph are possible near Lake Michigan,” at the south end of the lake, most likely in Indiana but also possible along the lakefront in Cook County, according to the weather service. Experts warned area residents to secure outdoor objects, such as tents, umbrellas and lawn furniture well ahead of the storm’s late-night arrival.chicagotribune.com
Southeast Side residents rise up against pollution
The Chicago's Southeast Side was once the gateway to Big Steel. Industrial work near the convergence of Lake Michigan and the Calumet River produced jobs and prosperity from the South Side to Gary until their slow grinding halt in the 1980s. Despite a long period of decline that followed the loss of mill jobs, the area remains home to numerous industrial jobs and shuttered mills and factories, some on contaminated land. Now a new generation of Southeast Side residents, some the descendants of mill workers who arrived a century ago, are demanding a cleaner future free of the industrial pollutants that they say have caused chronic health problems.chicagotribune.com
Shipwreck from 1880s revealed by shifting Lake Michigan water levels
A change in Lake Michigan water levels has revealed a shipwreck from the 1880s that is visible in western Michigan for the first time since 2018. Experts believe it's the wooden spine of the Contest, said Craig Rich, director of the Michigan Shipwreck Research Association. The wreckage is along the shore in Muskegon County, near where the White Lake channel meets Lake Michigan. Drone image of the White Lake shipwreck by Kevin Ailes Michigan Shipwreck Research Association. According to the Michigan Shipwreck Research Association, the Contest had a streak of bad luck even before its demise.cbsnews.com
55 mph wind gusts, 13-foot waves, flooding, expected to continue in Chicago area through Friday, forecasters say
“It’s definitely kind of a windy, raw day across the area,” meteorologist Kevin Birk said about 11:30 a.m. Thursday. “The rain should be stopping in the next few hours. In northern Cook County, it’s already begun letting up. The southern suburbs may get a quick wintry mix before it ends, an ice pellet or a snowflake here and there, but that should taper off by this afternoon, too.”chicagotribune.com
The craziest St. Patrick’s Day weather since 1871 — and how the Tribune covered it
Chicago had a snow depth of 7 inches — the deepest ever for the day — on March 17, 1960. The day was also memorable for two teenagers who used St. Patrick’s Day as their excuse for skipping school. Both wandered almost 1 mile out onto an ice-covered Lake Michigan. Onlookers at 79th Street tipped off police, who escorted the boys off the ice and to the Grand Crossing police station where they “received a scolding from juvenile officers,” according to the Tribune.chicagotribune.com
Chicago area to see ‘splendid’ weekend, with temps cooler where there’s still snow cover
Temperatures Friday reached the mid- to low 40s, with lower temperatures near Lake Michigan, after early morning patchy fog burned off in some areas, according to the National Weather Service. After a low around freezing overnight, with some rain or wintry mix after midnight, high temperatures should be in the 50s through the weekend.chicagotribune.com
Where does your town get its water? Search our map.
Less than 50 miles away from one of the largest freshwater systems on Earth, groundwater is running out. Joliet is the latest city to give up on the deep aquifers, voting last month — in a decision officials called the most significant in the town’s history — to tap into Lake Michigan water provided by Chicago.chicagotribune.com
Daywatch: State sets vaccine record, Illinois towns on the verge of water shortage and Ms. Biscuit is reopening
In northeastern Illinois, groundwater has been drained faster than it is replenished, causing water levels to drop to depths where costs and complications may render wells inoperable. Joliet is the latest city to give up on the deep aquifers, voting last month to tap into Lake Michigan water provided by Chicago. That comes with a cost: If Joliet takes on the project alone, an average monthly water bill for residents could quadruple in the next 20 years.chicagotribune.com
Just 50 miles from Lake Michigan, groundwater is running out, leaving Illinois towns with a tough choice to make
Where Chicago-area water comes fromCommunities in Cook and DuPage counties get most of their water from Lake Michigan, while Kane, McHenry, Kendall, Will and western Lake counties get theirs from groundwater. Many of the communities that use groundwater draw at least partially from sandstone aquifers. Note: Data from 2014, some communities may be out of date. Source: Illinois State Water Surveychicagotribune.com
More Illinois residents are turning to Lake Michigan for their drinking water. Climate change could add volatility to the supply.
Runoff is variable, dependent on precipitation in the 673-square-mile watershed. To offset the reversal of the Chicago River, officials count runoff in the watershed against the state’s Lake Michigan total. In 2017, the last year accounting has been completed, runoff made up the largest portion of the diversion at 45%. Public water systems pumping from Lake Michigan, which send drinking water to taps, has generally been the largest.chicagotribune.com
Groundwater running out in northeastern Illinois
Less than 50 miles away from one of the largest freshwater systems on Earth, groundwater is running out. Joliet is the latest city to give up on the deep aquifers, voting last month to tap into Lake Michigan water provided by Chicago. In northeastern Illinois, more water has been drained from the aquifers than is replenished, causing water levels to drop to depths where costs and complications may render wells inoperable.chicagotribune.com
Michigan approves Great Lakes oil pipeline tunnel permits
(AP Photo/Carlos Osorio, File)TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. – Michigan's environmental agency said Friday it has approved construction of an underground tunnel to house a replacement for a controversial oil pipeline in a channel linking two of the Great Lakes. AdThe project requires permits from the state Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. “We have issued permits designed to ensure that if a tunnel is constructed, it will be in strict compliance with relevant statutes and adhere to stringent protections against impacts to the Great Lakes,” Clark said. State officials emphasized the tunnel project was a separate legal matter from the dispute over the existing pipeline, which was laid in 1953. It has taken steps to prevent future anchor strikes and says the tunnel project would eliminate that danger.
Michigan governor seeks shutdown of Great Lakes oil pipeline
Gretchen Whitmer took legal action Friday to shut down a pipeline that carries oil beneath a channel linking two of the Great Lakes. “Enbridge has routinely refused to take action to protect our Great Lakes and the millions of Americans who depend on them for clean drinking water and good jobs,” the Democratic governor said in a statement. "They have repeatedly violated the terms of the 1953 easement by ignoring structural problems that put our Great Lakes and our families at risk. One of the pipeline supports was damaged this summer, apparently by a boat cable. Placing the pipes beneath a busy shipping lane with no protective cover violated the state's duty to protect the public's interest in Great Lakes waters and bottomlands, the document said.
Biden's lessons learned: spending time, money in Midwest
Biden's "campaign is doing a better job, even during COVID, of reaching out with the candidates and a voter-to-voter effort. Besides spending no time in Wisconsin and only five days in Michigan, Clinton didn't begin advertising in either until two weeks before the election. There's been more to Biden's sharper focus on Michigan and Wisconsin than showing up and spending money. Biden's Michigan campaign as well as national aides have contacted Kinloch more in the past two months than Clinton's did throughout all of 2016, he said. “They're looping everything we're doing individually together under the Biden campaign,” Kinloch said.
3 denied bond in alleged plot to kidnap Michigan governor
In a photo provided by the Michigan Office of the Governor, Michigan Gov. The governor delivered remarks addressing Michiganders after the Michigan Attorney General, Michigan State Police, U.S. Department of Justice, and FBI announced state and federal charges against 13 members of two militia groups who were preparing to kidnap and possibly kill the governor. She said she would rule at a later date on the bond status of the other two Michigan men, Adam Fox and Ty Garbin. A sixth defendant from Delaware, Barry Croft, was ordered Tuesday to be transferred to Michigan to face the charges. But Assistant U.S. Attorney Nils Kessler countered that it was a “serious plot” and argued that Franks should not be released.
Enbridge says contractor vessels may have damaged pipeline
Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration, the Michigan attorney general's office and the state Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy. A state judge granted a request from Nessel to close the line June 25 after Enbridge reported the damage. The Enbridge report said the nature of the damage and drag marks in the lakebed pointed to a cable or anchor from a small or moderately sized vessel. Enbridge says it has stepped up security measures in the straits since a 6-ton (5.44-metric tonne) barge and tugboat anchor struck Line 5 in April 2018. They have focused primarily on avoiding contact with larger vessels but are being expanded to prevent encounters with smaller ones, Duffy said.
Protests in Trump country test his hold in rural white areas
Far from the industrial norths urban centers, hundreds of protests over black injustice have cropped up in small cities in rural areas. The protests in these Republican-leaning areas offer a test of the president's ability to reassemble his older, white voting bloc. No, you cant.Trump carried Pennsylvania by about 44,000 votes in 2016, in part with overwhelming support from a patchwork of rural, white counties. Dozens of protests have taken place in counties in these four battleground states that Trump flipped from Democrat to Republican. If Biden carries every state Clinton did in 2016 and reclaims Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin, he would win a majority of the Electoral College votes.
Lack of social distancing leads to closure of parks, trails
Mayor Lori Lightfoot did not consider that the kind of postcard perfect scene that attracts visitors from around the world. “We know what happens when you don't social distance... ” Lightfoot told reporters after observing the waterside vista on Wednesday. On the North Carolina-Tennessee border, after more than 30,000 people arrived each day last weekend, the Great Smoky Mountains National Park closed down. Valley Forge National Historical Park in Pennsylvania closed its trails and access to the boardwalk in Long Beach, Long Island, has been blocked. That prompted the village's health department to order the parks and park facilities closed to everyone.
Gale-force winds, up to 20-foot waves likely on Lake Michigan
(CNN) - The second intense storm in a week is whipping up gale-force winds and waves as high as 20 feet across an already-high Lake Michigan. Waves already had hit 9 feet early Tuesday off the eastern Lake Michigan shore. The combination of above-average lake levels and gale-force winds will lead to another round of lakeshore flooding and beach erosion Tuesday through Thursday. Near-record lake levels leading to beach erosionAbove-average rainfall this year around Lake Michigan has raised the lake to near-record lake levels. Lake Michigan and Lake Huron will remain above the long-term average levels by 30 to 32 inches over the next six months, the US Army Corps of Engineers predicts.
American steel industry downgraded as trade war drags on
NEW YORK - The steady decline of America's steel industry is continuing, despite President Donald Trump's efforts to protect it through tariffs on imports. The latest sign came on Thursday, when Moody's downgraded its outlook for the entire domestic industry to "negative" from "stable." Trump came into office in 2017 promising to revive the steel industry and save jobs. His tariffs 25% on most steel imports and 10% on most aluminum imports initially pushed prices higher. But the increased steel production and prices didn't last, and some steelmakers, including US Steel, have more recently closed mills.
Student recycles plastic waste into clothing
ANN ARBOR, Mich. - University of Michigan student Jackson Riegler is turning plastic waste from the Great Lakes into sustainable clothing. "The Great Lakes are really special and tremendously important to Michigan and our country." The economics student is aiming to prevent the prediction that seas will have more plastic than fish in the near future. The company donates 5 percent of all profits to nonprofit groups working to preserve the Great Lakes. "As plastic waste continues to build up domestically, we hope to inspire other companies to use U.S. plastic waste in their supply chains by taking charge as a leader in the industry and inspiring customers to live more sustainably."
Woman, dogs rescued after night below Lake Michigan bluff
A Coast Guard helicopter was used to rescue a woman and a dog from the bottom of a sandy bluff near Lake Michigan in northern Michigan. LAKE MICHIGAN (WNEM) - A Coast Guard helicopter was used to rescue a woman and a dog from the bottom of a sandy bluff near Lake Michigan in northern Michigan. The Coast Guard says the woman, her husband and three dogs spent Thursday night at the bottom of the bluff, near Ludington, after they couldn't climb up the loose soil and sand. The Coast Guard sent two helicopters, one from Muskegon and another from Traverse City. One helicopter was used to airlift the woman and a dog around 12:45 p.m.A local team from the fire department rescued the other two dogs.