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Planet Detroit

Planet Detroit helps you get smarter about the environment in Detroit and Michigan. Planet Detroit’s stories and weekly newsletter focus on explanatory, solutions-based and investigative reporting, and a deep commitment to community engagement around local environmental issues. Planet Detroit’s mission is to raise awareness about Metro Detroit’s environmental and public health issues, hold powerful entities accountable and help our audience connect with their local environment and take action to protect the health of their communities.

detroit farmers working on making a new area of grass into a garden
Brenda Sharpe of Detroit has had a personal garden for years, but for the last two she has grown a community garden on lots adjacent to her westside home with hopes of expanding into an urban farm.
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There may have never been a time when Detroit has needed trees more. A healthy urban canopy represents one of the most effective strategies for dealing with periods of extreme heat and flooding, which — according to the National Climate Assessment — are likely to be the two most significant impacts of climate change in the Midwest.
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Kayaking at Belle Isle, state park in Detroit. Proposal 1 on Michigan ballots this election asks voters to make decisions about how public funds for parks and recreation should be spent.
Funding for parks and public lands sounds like an easy yes for conservationists -- but that’s an oversimplification of what’s at stake with Proposal 1, and not all environmentalists agree on this issue.
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The change in the Grand Prix’s schedule is a striking turn of events for an issue that’s inspired such heated debate, including contentious public meetings, impassioned Op-Eds, questions over the race’s environmental impact and conflicting reports on its economic benefit.
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Food distribution in Detroit to meet increased need during the pandemic
This is the new picture of food insecurity in Detroit, where the coronavirus pandemic has made hunger more visible. In the last six months, food banks, schools and social service providers have made a tremendous pivot to make sure people are able to eat.
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Marathon Petroleum's Detroit refinery in the 48217 zip code, frequently called the 'most polluted' area in Michigan. Photo by @ddatch54/Flickr
Detroit's 48217 zip code is known as the "most polluted" in Michigan -- here's how it got that moniker, and why it matters for environmental activists.
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Tamika Jaja
Tamika Jaja would rather focus on learning the names of native insects than being distracted by how she may be perceived by others, but knows that it’s likely not a luxury she’ll have any time soon.
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Empty roads, canals and bridges are among Melissa McLeod’s favorite spots to look for birds. From the slow-moving canals of Belle Isle to a pop-up bird bath formed by a pothole, she travels in search of the habitats that offer her windows into Detroit’s urban/natural world and its inhabitants.
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