Defending the Great Lakes and Environment

In Michigan, the Great Lakes are central to our culture, economy and way of life. Gary grew up spending his summers on the Great Lakes and knows that we need to protect them for future generations.

Years before it was mainstream, Gary was working to combat climate change and defend our lakes by advocating for a Great Lakes drilling ban. While in the Senate, Gary authored and passed into law bipartisan measures to protect our lakes from catastrophic oil spills, and he successfully fought against budget cuts that would have eliminated Great Lakes funding, even helping secure historic Great Lakes funding to clean up contaminated lakes, beaches and waterways and prevent the spread of invasive species.

While areas like Flint and Detroit continue to struggle for clean and accessible water, Gary has taken action to uplift and support these communities by leading the fight to successfully pass emergency aid for Flint after the lead water crisis. He’s also helping to secure funding to expand Head Start for communities affected by lead water pollution and is a leader on cleaning up toxic PFAS chemicals, which have contaminated drinking water across the state. Gary helped convene the Senate’s first-ever hearing on PFAS, passed into law a ban on the use of PFAS firefighting foams on military bases, which has been a key source of PFAS contaminated water in our state, and he’s led efforts to establish clear standards on cleaning up and limiting exposure to these toxic chemicals.