Letter from the Executive Director
Having recently moved to Michigan, one of the first questions I am asked is where I lived previously. When I tell people that I moved here from Colorado, the next question is usually a puzzled, “Why?” To me, the answer is very simple: I believe Michigan should be a primary focus of conservation for our generation. I feel called to protect water.
The Great Lakes are a precious resource. Not only are the lakes home to ecosystems that support vast networks of life, they are the very lifeblood for the millions of humans that get their drinking water from the system. As portions of the world get drier and hotter, climate migrations are sure to follow. West Michigan populations will grow, making the quality of this resource all the more critical.
The Great Lakes and the water bodies that feed into them must be protected and preserved for use today and for generations to come. For land trusts, that means protecting the land that surrounds the lakes and their tributaries.
Once the land is protected, we can use a wide variety of tools to improve water quality. Together with conservation easement owners, volunteers, partner organizations, and your generous support, we have planted trees, restored degraded ecosystems, and prevented development throughout the eight West Michigan counties we proudly serve. Many of the bogs, fens, vernal pools, rivers, and lakes in our region have you to thank for their protection.
As an elemental force, water exhibits the duality of creation and destruction inherent in nature. Humans are much the same. The question remains, will we use our powers to preserve the natural world for future generations, or will we allow our greed to destroy our precious natural resources?
In this newsletter, we have highlighted some of the ways that the Land Conservancy of West Michigan and our supporters are working to protect water. We couldn’t do this work without your help. Thank you!
Kim Karn, Executive Director