From swimming in Lake Michigan to boating on Lake Superior, the Great Lakes’ importance to Michigan can’t be overstated. Whether we go there to hike, fish or swim, the Great Lakes are beautiful places to get away from it all, and make Michigan a great place to live.

 The Great Lakes need our help

But right now, 55 percent of streams in Great Lakes states are vulnerable to pollution due to loopholes in the law. Nobody should be allowed to treat our waterways like a personal sewer. That’s why Environment Michigan is standing up for our lakes.

The Environmental Protection Agency is working to close loopholes in the Clean Water Act, but big polluters are working to dismantle the law. We’re on the verge of the biggest victory for clean water in a decade, but we need your support to win.

 Drinking water for 1.4 million at risk

The EPA is working to close the loopholes in the Clean Water Act—the landmark policy that was established to protect all our nation’s waterways. This would be the largest step taken for clean water in over a decade, protecting thousands of miles of streams that feed the Great Lakes—and the drinking water for 1.4 million Michiganders—from big polluters.

 Polluters are spending millions lobbying to discredit and dismantle the Clean Water Act. They’ve threatened “legal warfare.” They’ve pushed Congress to cripple the EPA’s ability to protect our water. And they’ve made false but widely circulated claims, including one that the EPA wants to “regulate mud puddles.” We’re organizing everyone—from local farmers to scientists to our neighbors down the street—to convince the EPA to stand up to the pressure and protect our waters.

 Together we can win

Our staff is knocking on doors across Michigan to educate people about what’s at stake. We’re also building coalitions, educating policymakers, and shining a spotlight in the media on the need to protect the Great Lakes. But the real key to winning this fight is you. 

Clean Water Updates

Report | Environment Michigan Research and Policy Center

Toxic Waterways

Coal-fired power plants are the single largest source of mercury pollution in the United States. Emissions from these plants eventually make their way into Michigan’s waterways, contaminating fish and wildlife.

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Report | Environment Michigan Research and Policy Center

Wasting Our Waterways: Toxic Industrial Pollution and the Unfulfilled Promise of the Clean Water Act

Industrial facilities continue to dump millions of pounds of toxic chemicals into America’s rivers, streams, lakes and ocean waters each year — threatening both the environment and human health. According to the EPA, pollution from industrial facilities is responsible for threatening or fouling water quality in more than 10,000 miles of rivers and more than 200,000 acres of lakes, ponds and estuaries nationwide.

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Report | Earthjustice, Environment America, Clean Water Action, National Wildlife Federation, Natural Resources Defense Council, Sierra Club, and Southern Environmental Law Center

Courting Disaster: How the Supreme Court Has Broken the Clean Water Act and Why Congress Must Fix It

For decades, the Clean Water Act protected the Nation’s surface water bodies from unregulated pollution and rescued them from the crisis status they were in during the late 1960s and early 1970s. Now these vital protections are being lost. This report details the threat to our Nation’s waters by examining dozens of case studies, and highlights the urgent need for Congress to restore full Clean Water Act protections to our waters.

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Report | Environment America

Our Great Waters

To restore and protect our great waters, Environment Michigan is calling on Congress to pass legislation this summer that will reduce pollution, increase investments in restoration efforts, and protect our most treasured places for generations to come. This report highlights the following eight waters across the country that are in the most need of increased protections and immediate restoration efforts: Long Island Sound, Chesapeake Bay, the Gulf of Mexico, Lake Tahoe, the Puget Sound, the Columbia River, the San Francisco Bay and the Great Lakes.

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Report | Environment America Research & Policy Center

Corporate Agribusiness & America's Waterways

Pollution from agribusiness is responsible for some of America’s most intractable water quality problems – including the “dead zones” in the Chesapeake Bay, Gulf of Mexico and Lake Erie, and the pollution of countless streams and lakes with nutrients, bacteria, sediment and pesticides.

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