Michigan Celebrates Conservation Week
This spring, the Michigan Senate is helping usher in a new celebration - Michigan Conservation Week. The event began with Earth Day on April 22 and closes on May 1. Activities during the week focus on Michigan's conservation heritage and protecting our state's magnificent natural resources.
Michigan's bountiful resources provide both beauty and rich opportunities for the outdoor activities residents and families love - fishing, boating, hiking, skiing, bird watching, snowmobiling, nature photography and more. Michigan's natural resources also support a multi-billion-dollar outdoor tourism industry. Wise management, guided by a conservation ethic, ensures that the natural beauty and quality of life we enjoy today in this state will also be enjoyed by future generations.
There are many ways we can work to preserve the natural resources in our own neighborhoods and communities. Some fun family activities include:
Starting an Arbor Day tradition and planting a tree;
Joining with your neighbors to clean up a local park or trail;
Recycling and reducing the trash from your home or business;
Cutting down on energy use at home or in the car; and
Composting - turning leaves and yard waste into a healthy soil additive.
In the Michigan Senate, we have also been actively working to protect our natural resources. In the past few years alone, the Senate has authored groundbreaking legislation to regulate water withdrawal and map groundwater aquifers, restrict the flow of out-of-state waste, and ban the importation of invasive species.
Current issues on the front burner include a resolution aimed at keeping the Asian carp out of the Great Lakes and legislation to ban the sale of household detergents containing phosphorus. Legislation of interest to sportsmen and women include bills to protect the right to hunt and fish, and measures that add new penalties for poaching.
During Michigan Conservation Week, I will introduce a four-bill package that will clearly state that it is the mission of our Department of Natural Resources, the Natural Resources Commission and the Legislature to protect the rights of hunting and fishing for our residents and tourists.
This legislation will insert the mission of the DNR throughout key portions of the Natural Resources and Environmental Protection Act to continue to promote and protect hunting and fishing opportunities in Michigan.
Last year, I sponsored a constitutional amendment that was adopted which safeguards hunting and fishing funds in the state constitution. With this amendment, the funds cannot be used for purposes other than to protect hunting or fishing.
Michigan Conservation Week can remind us how conservation helps preserve the high quality of life available to those who reside, work and recreate in Michigan.
To find out more about local conservation information, you can read a legislative report and visit my Web site at www.SenatorRandyRichardville.com. Click on the conservation update 2007.
Posted: Tuesday, April 24, 2007
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