Great Lakes Now Connect

Invasive Species
Investing in Nature 

Freshwater & Farming 

Northern Forests
Migratory Birds
Wild Places

Native Fisheries

Watch it Now >

Wild Places – August 5, 2014 ET

Migratory Birds May 6, 2014

Northern Forests Feb 18, 2014
  Download on iTunes   Freshwater & Farming Nov 12, 2013

Download on iTunes

What’s fresh in the market today? You’ll find a bountiful harvest of food from the Great Lakes basin, from cherries and blueberries to potatoes and corn. But what impact does this diverse production have on the world’s largest freshwater system? How will the Great Lakes be affected by our growing population and the demand for more food? These are some of the questions we’ll be exploring in our next production of Great Lakes Now Connect.

This two-hour program, called Great Lakes Now Connect: Freshwater & Farming, will explore the increasing demands on agriculture and our freshwater resources as well as the potential solutions for improving the agriculture industry to address those challenges. The broadcast will consider how traditional agricultural practices have affected freshwater in the Great Lakes and examine new conservation practices that appear to improve efficiency and reduce environmental impacts, and discuss emerging trends in the supply chain market.

Panel 1:Moderated by Mary Fales, Saginaw Bay Watershed Project Director, The Nature Conservancy

  • Jane Frankenberger, Professor of Agricultural & Biological Engineering, Purdue University
  • Paul Gross, Cover Crops and Bioenergy Educator, Michigan State University Extension.
  • Terry McClure, 5th Generation Farmer and former President of Ohio Farm Bureau
  • Albert Jones, Area Conservationist, USDA-NRCS

Panel 2: Moderated by Patrick Doran, Director of Science for Michigan and the Great Lakes, The Nature Conservancy

  • Doug Busdeker, Area General Manager for Farm Centers in the Plant Nutrient Group, The Andersons Inc.
  • Gail Hesse, Executive Director, Ohio Lake Erie Commission.
  • William Schleizer, Managing Director, Delta Institute.

Investing in Nature Aug 13, 2013 10am – 12pm

In the Great Lakes region, we depend on forests for wood, lakes for drinking water and recreation and in the cities along the Great Lakes, we expect clean water from our tap and effective sewage and storm water control.  But what are we doing to make sure these resources will continue to supply our needs well into the future?

This two-hour broadcast will explore how the natural resources of the Great Lakes basin sustain our way of life.  The program will explore how businesses and municipalities are investing in nature – not only to preserve these lifestyle benefits – but to improve their business bottom line and competitive marketplace advantage.

Tune in August 13th at 10 am on Detroit Public TV Channel 56.2 or online for Great Lakes Now Connect: Investing in Nature.

Panel 1: Ecosystem services: Nature’s benefits to people, economies and quality of life, Moderated by Katie Kahl

  • Jon Fosgitt, Forest Management Specialist, Compass Land Consultants
  • Steve Polasky, Fesler-Lampert Professor of Ecological & Environmental Economics, University of Minnesota
  • Heather Stirratt, Great Lakes Regional Coordinator for NOAA’s National Ocean Service at NOAA Coastal Services Center (MN).
  • Amanda Weinstein, Economics Department, University of Akron

Panel 2: How should we invest to protect our future? Public and private examples of natural investments, Moderated by Patrick Doran

  • Jon Allan, Director, Office of the Great Lakes
  • Skiles Boyd, Vice President, Environmental Affairs DTE Energy; Board of Council of Great Lakes Industries
  • Kent Gilges, Managing Director, Conservation Forestry
  • Kevin Shafer, Executive Director, Milwaukee WI Metropolitan Sewerage District


If you want to contribute to this discussion you are welcome to attend our LIVE broadcast! Please RVSP today to Heather Forgione at (248) 305-3707 or at  You can also submit your questions about Investing in Nature today!  @greatlakesnow #investinnature.


May 14, 2013, Detroit Public Television and The Nature Conservancy presented another Great Lakes Now Town Hall Event, this discussio focused on Beaches and low water levels.

The special featured two panel discussions, hosted by MiWeek‘s Christy McDonald (@ChristyTV).

Panel 1: How Safe Are Our Beaches?

Katherine Kahl, Ph. D., Conservation Policy and Practices Specialist, The Nature Conservancy in Michigan, Moderator

  • Joan Rose, the Homer Nowlin Chair in Water Research & Co-Director of the Center for Water Sciences and Center for Advancing Microbial Risk Assessment at Michigan State University, Dept. Fisheries and Wildlife in East Lansing, MI.
  • Steve Madewell, Director, Toledo Metroparks
  • Joe Nester, Owner and Consultant with Nester Ag, LLC

Panel 2: Where Is My Lake?

Patrick Doran, Director of Conservation Programs, The Nature Conservancy in Michigan, Moderator

  • Jon Allan, Director, Michigan Office of the Great Lakes
  • Drew Gronewold, Hydrologist , NOAA Great Lakes Environmental Research Lab
  • Glen Nekvasil,Vice President, Lakes Carriers Association, Ohio
  • Jennifer Read, Deputy Director, University of Michigan Water Center and Executive Director, Great Lakes Observing System

Adding to the conversation will be pre-produced video segments throughout the broadcast on topics such as beach closing and what to expect this summer, beach access, lakes levels effects and dredging, shore fishing, recreational boating, beach home movies, and questions from citizens.

You can post this town hall on your website – download the video player code here:

Video Player Code for Live Stream and On Demand (Word .docx)

Invasive Species

On January 15, 2013 Detroit Public TV and The Nature Conservancy hosted a seminar on Invasive Species in the Great Lakes.  Learn more about what the species are, how they arrived, and what their impacts have been and might be.  Watch it now >


This Great Lakes Now special was moderated by veteran journalist Christy McDonald, the panels included:

Panel #1: They’re Here! (and it’s more than just Carp!)

Patrick Doran, Director of Conservation Programs, The Nature Conservancy in Michigan, Moderator

  • Kathryn Buckner, President, Council of Great Lakes Industries
  • Dr. Marc Gaden, Great Lakes Fishery Commission
  • Dr. Hugh MacIsaac, Professor at the University of Windsor and Director of the Canadian Aquatic Invasive Species Network
  • Paul Pacholski, President, Ohio-Lake Erie Charter Boat Association

Panel #2: The Search for Solutions

Lindsay Chadderton, Director, Great Lakes Aquatic Invasive Species, The Nature Conservancy, Moderator

  • Tom Barrett, Mayor of Milwaukee
  • Matt DossPolicy Director, Great Lakes Commission
  • Phil Moy, Assistant Director of Research, Wisconsin Sea Grant
  • Sara LeSage, Aquatic Invasive Species Program Coordinator, Michigan Department of Environmental Quality

Visit for more information about Aquatic Invasive Species.

Join the conversation:

Twitter – @GreatLakesNow #greatlakes

For more information about the panel discussion you can read the press release or email