We have all seen the specialty license plates as we drive about. Some support specific college or universities, others have the sport teams on them like the Lions or the Pistons, others a duck or a moose. All of these different license plates cost a little more to put on your vehicle but the proceeds of that purchase go to a special cause.
One of the specialty license plates– the one with the sailboat– is all about Water Quality. The plate costs $35, $25 of which helps support three programs of the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE): The Shorelines Stewards Program, Michigan Paddle Stewards, and the Michigan Clean Waters Corps (MiCorps).
In MiCorps, the Water Quality License plates pay for grants that allow local governments to host stream and river cleanups. These cleanups are led by our local communities, but it is all made possible by the volunteers! Normal citizens provide the willing hands to get into our streams and rivers and pull out tires, old bikes, and all sorts of plastic rubbish.
The Water Quality license plates also provide support for the Exotic Aquatic Plant Watch, a parameter in the MiCorps Cooperative Lakes Monitoring Program. Exotic Aquatic Plant Watch volunteers learn to identify invasive aquatic plants that may be found in Michigan lakes, and where to look for them. The data they collect supports local invasive species management and prevention, and informs statewide and national efforts to understand the spread and impacts of these invaders.
EGLE recently released a nice piece about the Water Quality License Plate that was the motivation behind this quick post and you can check out this article for more information and instructions on how to get this license plate. https://www.michigan.gov/sos/vehicle/license-plates/special-cause-fundraising-options
Interested in a MiCorps Volunteer Stream Clean Up Grant? The next round of requests for proposals won’t happen until January 2022, but you can learn more here: https://micorps.net/stream-monitoring/stream-grants/