Protecting the Saugatuck Dunes
If you are a Michigan resident, would you take a moment to consider signing a petition you will find at www.tinyurl.com/SaugatuckDunes ?
The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ) is currently considering a wetlands fill permit needed to construct a road through a portion of Saugatuck dunes, 310 acres of pristine coastal dunes adjacent to the Saugatuck State Park. The proposed development of the property would pave over 640,000 square feet of coastal dunes and wetlands and destroy over 500 trees. My reasons for objecting to the proposed road are listed in the following letter I sent to the MDEQ and the Governor of Michigan. A much simpler petition may be found at the above sight.
Thank you for taking a moment to get involved in a decision that could affect the quality of Great Lakes water for future generations.
The content of my letter:
I am not a scientist or an environmental expert. I am a retiree who moved to Laketown Township to sail, hike the dunes, walk the beaches, and live where I would always have access to clean, fresh water. The decision before the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality regarding the development of the McClendon property (13-03-0079-P) affects me and this place I now call home.
After moving here in 2005, I read with interest and concern the report of the 2005 Great Lakes Regional Collaboration assessing the health of the Great Lakes ecosystem. While funding for the plan to reverse the deteriorating state of the Great Lakes has been limited, I am heartened by the depth of the research, pleased to see strong bipartisan support, and hopeful the eight key drivers identified as critical to the restoration of the Great Lakes will be used in all decisions affecting the quality of our water.
Three of the eight priorities identified by the GLRC are involved in the decision currently before the MDEQ, priorities reiterated in a 2009 plan presented by Michigan’s DEQ to residents of this state. Like me.
Any decision regarding development of the McClendon property should adhere to the recommendations of the thousands involved in the research behind both the GLRC and MDEQ plans. However, my greatest hope is that we find ways to add the McClendon property to the Saugatuck State Park, to follow the direction of both the GLRC and the MDEQ 2009 plans and protect 310 acres of pristine land that influences the quality of water defining our way of life; water that provides an economic backbone to the state so eloquently outlined in the MDEQ plan; and supplies millions with drinking water.
We can live without many things, access to clean, fresh water is not one of them.
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