The battle for the rights of nature heats up in the Great Lakes

The battle for the rights of nature heats up in the Great Lakes

Photo: Algae floats on the surface of Lake Erie’s Maumee Bay in Oregon, Ohio, on Friday, Sept. 15, 2017. (AP/Paul Sancya)

In February, the voters of Toledo, Ohio, passed a ballot initiative that gives Lake Erie and those who rely on the lake’s ecosystem a bill of rights. The idea is to protect and preserve the ecosystem so that the life that depends on it — humans included — can


EPA meeting on Michindoh Aquifer draws crowd to Fayette

photo: EPA meeting on Michindoh Aquifer draws crowd to Fayette

FAYETTE, Ohio — They came. They demonstrated.

They groaned, they rolled their eyes, and they whispered to people on either side of them once everyone was seated on the Fayette High School’s hard, wooden gymnasium bleachers, with at least four Fayette police officers standing watch.

But overall, the unusually large crowd that attended Tuesday night’s public information session about Artesian of Pioneer’s plan to tap into the nine-county Michindoh Aquifer … [more…]

In ‘Historic Vote,’ Ohio City Residents Grant Lake Erie Legal Rights of a Person

photo: Lake Erie and the Ohio shoreline

“What Toledo voters and other places working on rights of nature are hoping is to not only change laws but to change culture.”

Tired of receiving notices warning that their drinking water may have been compromised and having little recourse to fight corporate polluters, voters in Toledo, Ohio on Tuesday approved a measure granting Lake Erie some of the same legal rights as a human being.

Sixty-one percent of voters … [more…]

Toxic Firefighting Foam Has Contaminated U.S. Drinking Water

photo: Toxic Firefighting Foam at an airfield and/or military base

A small sea of fire retardant foam was unintentionally released in an aircraft hangar, temporarily covering a small portion of the flight line at Travis Air Force Base in California, Sept. 24, 2013. Photo: U.S. Air Force

The EPA has yet to regulate the toxic PFCs found in fire-suppressing foam, Teflon, and other products that have contaminated our drinking water.

Lori Cervera had always been an active person. She liked … [more…]

Hormone-Disrupting Weed Killer Taints Tap Water for Millions in Corn Belt

photo: child drinking water from an open tap

Seasonal spikes of atrazine–a weed killer that can disrupt hormones and harm developing fetuses–contaminate drinking water in corn-growing areas of the Midwest and beyond, according to an analysis of federal records by the Environmental Working Group (EWG).

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) data show that in some Corn Belt communities, atrazine levels can spike three to seven times above the legal limit in late spring and early summer. But by … [more…]