Great Lakes Today

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Great Lakes Today, a collaboration of public media stations, was created to highlight issues affecting the lakes. All reports are available to stations for free -- whether or not the station is in the Great Lakes region.

The main partners in the collaboration are WBFO (Buffalo), ideastream (Cleveland) and WXXI (Rochester); other stations in the region will also contribute reports. Great Lakes Today is funded through a grant from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.


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4 Pieces

Drownings at Great Lakes beaches often have a common cause: dangerous currents similar to those found along the ocean. Over the past decade, some 500 drownings and rescues have been attributed to structural, longshore and rip currents. This four-part series examines the issue from various perspectives, including a grieving mother, scientists developing a warning system, and a Michigan beach where drownings are concentrated. NOTE: Stories can run as a series or individually. Intros and outros are customized

Caption: Victor Small gets help for his asthma at an East Baltimore clinic., Credit: Angelica A. Morrison
3 Pieces

Minorities in the Great Lakes bear the burden of environmental problems such as air pollution, water contamination and waste dumps. This series examines the issue through residents of Cleveland, Buffalo and an indigenous community in Ontario, Canada.

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3 Pieces

The environmental movement is being redefined. Many advocacy groups are reaching out to minorities and addressing issues important to them. This three-part series explains how the movement has changed -- and what still needs to be done.

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5 Pieces

A look at the impact of President Trump's proposed budget cuts


Caption: Drug Take Back Program / US Drug Enfocement Administration, Credit: PHOTO SOURCE: US Drug Enfocement Administration
As America confronts the opioid crisis, environmental scientists are warning about a related problem. Chemicals from pain-killers and other drugs o...

Bought by WCPN, WLPR, WRST-FM Oshkosh, WDET Detroit Public Radio, North Country Public Radio and more

  • Added: Dec 08, 2017
  • Length: 03:37
  • Purchases: 14
Caption: This summer, a water discharge darkened the Niagara River near the falls., Credit: Maid of the Mist
The problem of sewer overflows affects the entire Great Lakes region. The EPA reports that about 182 municipalities have systems that can release u...

Bought by WRVO Public Media, Interlochen Public Radio, WCPN, WXXI, WCMU and more

  • Added: Dec 07, 2017
  • Length: :59
  • Purchases: 6
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The new USS Little Rock is docked at Canalside on Buffalo's waterfront, nearly two weeks in advance of its scheduled commissioning ceremony set to ...

Bought by WBFO, WCPN, and WCMU

  • Added: Dec 04, 2017
  • Length: 01:14
  • Purchases: 3
Caption: The Cleveland Harbor West Pierhead Lighthouse covered in ice, Credit: Amy Nichole Harris/Shutterstock
Over the past two winters, the Great Lakes have had a below-average ice cover. And that’s expected to continue this year. Great Lakes Today’s Eliz...

Bought by WBFO, WLPR, WRVO Public Media, WSKG, North Country Public Radio and more

  • Added: Dec 04, 2017
  • Length: :55
  • Purchases: 9
Caption: White fuzz on branches harbors the destructive hemlock woolly adelgid., Credit: Caitlin Whyte
The Hemlock Woolly Adelgid is almost impossible to see with the naked eye. But the insect is causing a lot of damage to hemlock trees and their sur...

Bought by WBFO, WRVO Public Media, WDET Detroit Public Radio, WOUB, WCPN and more

  • Added: Dec 01, 2017
  • Length: 03:44
  • Purchases: 8
Caption: A lawn that once stretched to the iron gate has ben eroded by high waters., Credit: Caitlin Whyte
As winter nears, residents along Lake Ontario are shoring up walls of sandbags for protection against high waves. Caitlin Whyte of WXXI reports for...

Bought by WBFO, WDET Detroit Public Radio, WCPN, WRVO Public Media, WAMC and more

  • Added: Nov 29, 2017
  • Length: 03:37
  • Purchases: 9
Caption: A northwest Ohio farm, Credit: Elizabeth Miller/ideastream
A new report from the International Joint Commission, a U.S.-Canadian agency, says the Great Lakes restoration is progressing -- but not quickly en...

Bought by WBFO, WSKG, WCMU, WCPN, Interlochen Public Radio and more

  • Added: Nov 28, 2017
  • Length: :57
  • Purchases: 9
Caption: Robin Guenther speaking in Cleveland., Credit: Elizabeth Miller
It’s been a year of natural disasters in the US, with wildfires on the west coast, hurricanes in the south – and even flooding along Lake Ontario. ...

Bought by WBFO, WAMC, WRVO Public Media, North Country Public Radio, WXXI and more

  • Added: Nov 21, 2017
  • Length: :59
  • Purchases: 8
Caption: July wastewater release at Niagara Falls, Credit: Twitter/@MaidOfTheMist
A new project takes aim at sewage overflows that are polluting the Great Lakes.

Bought by WCPN, WRVO Public Media, WXXI, WCMU, WAMC and more

  • Added: Nov 21, 2017
  • Length: 01:09
  • Purchases: 6
Caption: Stephen Handler discusses the projected fate of a yellow birch tree under climate change. , Credit: Samantha Harrington
The forests of the northern Great Lakes are important for businesses like tourism, logging and maple sugaring. But now they’re under pressure from ...

Bought by WXXI, WRVO Public Media, WDET Detroit Public Radio, WCPN, North Country Public Radio and more

  • Added: Nov 21, 2017
  • Length: 03:39
  • Purchases: 8