In shift to local newsgathering, Michigan Radio drops Environment Report

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Michigan Radio will end national production of The Environment Report, a news service producing daily interstitial news spots, in June. Three staff working on the show will be reassigned to local reporting: Lester Graham, host and senior editor, will create a new investigative/enterprise reporting unit; Mark Brush, senior producer, becomes the network’s online news content specialist; and reporter/producer Rebecca Williams will host a local/regional version of the show, covering environmental issues affecting Michigan and the Great Lakes. The Environment Report went national in 2008 but didn’t secure carriage in enough major markets to secure underwriting, according to Graham. Michigan Radio, which has been subsidizing the production, is restructuring its news room to focus on local news gathering, online reporting and investigative coverage. The Environment Report was created by the Great Lakes Radio Consortium, a news service covering environmental issues for stations in the Upper Midwest. Since GLRC launched in the early 1990s, stations in the Northwest, Northeast and the Ohio River Valley have created similar news collaboratives.

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