2022: A Big Year for Our Health and Environment
2022 was a big year at Michigan LCV. Together with the support of our membership, we celebrated win after win — and we aren’t slowing down as we head into the new year.
Take a look back at some of our biggest wins for Michigan’s land, air, water, public health, and democracy in 2022.
Passing a historic investment in our water through the Building Michigan Together Plan
In April, Governor Whitmer signed a historic $4.8 billion supplemental budget bill to clean up and protect our water, overhaul outdated water infrastructure, fund state, and local parks, repair roads and bridges, remove lead pipes, expand broadband internet, and more.
This historic investment includes:
- $515 million for wastewater and stormwater upgrades
- $750 million for drinking water infrastructure improvement projects
- $50 million for drinking water filters in schools and childcare facilities
- $88.2 million to address emerging contaminants, like toxic PFAS contaminants in storm and wastewater
- $35 million to address failing septic systems
- $15 million for cleaning up an old paper Mill contaminated by PFAS in Muskegon County
- $8.6 million to clean up PFAS and other contaminants in Iosco County
- $138.8 million to replace lead service lines, including $45 million in Benton Harbor and $75 million in Detroit
- $200 million for the Four Lakes Task Force to fix the dams that burst two years ago in Midland County
- $382.9 million in emergency rental assistance
- $50 million for energy efficiency, health, and safety improvements in low-income communities
- $25 million for electric vehicle (EV) industry support and pilot programs
- $450 million for local and state parks and trails
- $316 million for roads and bridges
- $250 million in statewide broadband service grants
- $121.4 million to help low-income residents stay in their homes
These projects are funded using $3.1 billion in federal COVID relief, $1 billion from the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA), and $571 million from the state’s General Fund.
These historic, transformational investments will strengthen our economy, pave the way for healthy, vibrant communities, and ensure all Michiganders have access to clean, safe drinking water.
Electing a conservation majority in Michigan’s House and Senate and protecting the top of the ticket
Michigan LCV played a major role in the 2022 election — spending more than $4 million, knocking hundreds of thousands of doors, and talking to thousands of Michiganders to elect environmental champions. Our efforts paid off big time with 86 of our 95 candidates winning their races. Entering 2023 with a conservation majority means we have a huge opportunity to pass clean energy legislation in the Great Lakes state and take real, concrete climate action.
The EPA set strong health advisory levels for key PFAS chemicals
In June, the EPA announced they were updating the health advisory levels for toxic PFAS chemicals found in our drinking water from 70 parts per trillion (ppt) to .02 ppt for PFOS and .004 ppt for PFOA, formally establishing that no amount of PFAS is safe for consumption.
The EPA also set lifetime health advisory limits for GenX at 10 ppt and PFBS (perfluorobutane sulfonic acid) at 2000 ppt. The advisory for Genx establishes that newer forms of PFAS are not safe and pose threats to our health and drinking water.
This new advisory sets a strong standard for drinking water testing and provides guidance to local agencies to better protect our communities’ health.
Governor Whitmer set Michigan on a path for 100% carbon neutrality by 2050 with the MI Healthy Climate Plan
In April, Governor Whitmer and the Council on Climate Solutions released the final MI Healthy Climate Plan — Michigan’s boldest climate action agenda in history. This Plan lays a framework for closing coal plants, reaching 60% clean energy by 2030 and 100% by 2050, building out electric vehicle charging infrastructure necessary to support 2 million EVs by 2030, and so much more. You can learn more about the details of the plan here. Governor Whitmer is taking bold action on climate — and with the newly elected conservation majority in the State House and Senate, we have a huge opportunity to bring this plan to life with strong climate legislation in 2023.