Great Lakes (IL IN MI MN OH WI)

Drones and Photojournalism — Elevating the Craft to New Heights

A match made in heaven — that’s how veteran National Geographic photojournalist Peter Essick sees the combination of drone photography and environmental journalism. In the latest EJ InSight, Essick shares insights and photos from his most recent drone project, capturing the restoration of the Great Lakes. Plus, in a sidebar, Essick gives practical advice on learning to fly your own drone.

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"‘Polluter Panel’ Hits Pause On Michigan PFAS Drinking Water Rules"

"Business and industry representatives appointed to a controversial regulatory oversight board by former Republican Gov. Rick Snyder helped temporarily slow down advancing drinking water standards that would limit allowable levels of toxic fluorochemicals called PFAS in Michigan drinking water if enacted."

Source: Grand Rapids Press, 11/04/2019

Court: State Law That Allows Line 5 Tunnel Construction Is Constitutional

"LANSING – Legislation approved under former Gov. Rick Snyder to allow for construction of a tunnel to house a new Enbridge Line 5 crude oil pipeline under the Straits of Mackinac is constitutional, the Court of Claims ruled Thursday."

Source: Detroit Free Press, 11/01/2019

News Can Net Eyeballs By Turning Dweebish Data Into Magic Maps

When it comes to telling environment and energy stories, especially about place and scale, data visualizations can turn an average story into a standout. Reporter’s Toolbox takes a look at some recent examples of inspiring data-mapping projects that provide insight into everything from auto emissions and floods to vanishing rivers and whipping winds.

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Another Bad-News Year Ahead for U.S. Coal?

As U.S. coal’s comedown continues, our latest Issue Backgrounder takes a close look at the factors behind the industry’s decline and finds a combination of economics, competition and shifting global markets, along with aging technology, politics and environmental pushback. What’s in store for coal in 2020?

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"PolyMet Opponents Ask Appeals Court To Overturn Mine Permits"

"Opponents of the proposed PolyMet copper-nickel mine urged the Minnesota Court of Appeals on Wednesday to cancel two of the project’s most important permits and order further proceedings to determine whether the mine’s environmental and financial safeguards are adequate."

Source: AP, 10/24/2019

Trump Admin Was Against Funding Great Lakes Program Before It Was For It

"The Environmental Protection Agency on Tuesday rolled out a five-year plan for funding a popular program for restoring the Great Lakes, even though in the not-so-distant past the Trump administration tried to ax the environmental initiative almost entirely."

Source: Washington Post, 10/24/2019
November 14, 2019 to November 15, 2019

People-Powered Publishing Conference 2019

This fourth annual event, at Columbia College Chicago, will tackle culture change in the newsroom with programs, workshops, talks and clinics. How do you build and protect a newsroom culture that is focused on what makes you essential for your community amid unpredictable social media trends, shifting corporate priorities, and constant cuts? Cost: $25.

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Award-Winner Chronicles Radioactive Risks at Midwest Nuclear Plants

A deeply documented investigation revealed serious problems in Illinois’ aging nuclear power plants, and won reporters Brett Chase and Madison Hopkins an outstanding small market investigative reporting award from the Society of Environmental Journalists last year. Chase spoke with SEJournal Online’s “Inside Story” about the “Power Struggle” project, about lessons learned and advice for other reporters. Read the Q&A.

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‘Waterfront Porch: Reclaiming Detroit’s Industrial Waterfront As a Gathering Place for All’

The Detroit River, a key Great Lakes shipping channel, was once the repository of millions of gallons of industrial discharge. But as a new book attests, Detroit’s industrial waterfront has in the last 50 years undergone a remarkable recovery that offers hope for the cleanup of other polluted Rust Belt towns. Read our BookShelf review.

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