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With climate change still a political minefield, some community leaders have found a way to prepare for the potentially severe consequences without triggering partisanship. Leaders in Grand Haven, a town of 10,600 in West Michigan, will meet this fall with design consultants to explore such possibilities as „cooling stations” for low-income people during future heat waves or development restrictions to prevent storm erosion along Lake Michigan. City Manager Pat McGinnis isn’t calling it a climate change initiative. ” 'I wouldn’t use those words,’ ” McGinnis said he told consultants. „Those are a potential flash point.” Grand Haven Mayor Geri McCaleb is among those who consider warming merely part of nature’s historical cycle. Yet she’s on board with ideas for dealing with storms. „History will bear out who has the right answers” about climate change, she said. Joe Vandermeulin, whose organization runs the Grand Haven program and others, is accustomed to walking the language tightrope. „The term 'global warming’ seems to be thoroughly misunderstood, so we don’t use it much,” he said, although a primary goal is helping communities prepare for … global warming. During a climate conference this summer that drew about 175 community leaders replica hermes , government officials and scientists, mostly from the Great Lakes area, organizers even distributed a pamphlet with tips for discussing the subject — or sidestepping it. For example, avoid hyperbolic „climageddon” warnings about impending catastrophe, it advises.— Associated PressStudy: More rapids in Grand Rapids could have $19.1M ripple effectA study released last week by the group Grand Rapids Whitewater estimates that the net annual economic impact for the proposed Grand Rapids Whitewater project along the Grand River would run between $15.9 million and $19.1 million, MiBiz reported. The project, estimated to cost about $30 million, aims to remove all or part of five dams and re-create rapids, making the river more hospitable for kayaking, fishing, rafting and other recreation — and resulting in more tourism spending. The study projected taxable property values around the riverfront to increase by $117.7 million. The project is expected to generate an additional $285 million in development and 1,520 jobs, the study said. Report: Lormax Stern sold Centerpointe Mall in GR for $68MCenterpointe Mall in Grand Rapids was sold in June for $68 million, reported. Bloomfield Hills-based Lormax Stern Development Co., which purchased the 525,000-square-foot shopping center in 2000, put the mall up for sale in December. City records indicate New York City-based CenterPoint Owner LLC now owns the mall. Earl Clements, a Colliers International West Michigan principal, would not give more information about the new owner. Colliers would manage the mall.Grape growers fear bad harvest will make for less variety in winesThink you could use a stiff drink? Consider the plight of grape growers in Southwest Michigan, who say virtually no European grapes — used to make Merlot and other reds — have survived to harvest, reported. Mark Longstroth, small-fruit educator for Michigan State University Extension, said heavy snow and subzero temperatures in January killed most of the European vines. And how does this affect consumers? Dean Bender, owner of Kalamazoo’s Lawton Ridge Winery, said it isn’t so much that prices will rise or supply will be low. It’s that the variety of wines will be lacking.Mich-cellaneous• All but six Michigan universities think that U.S. News & World Report doesn’t know the first thing about grading the best colleges in the U.S. Which is to say the six Michigan universities to crack the top 200 of the magazine’s list for 2015 are the University of Michigan at No. 29, Michigan State University in a tie for No. 85, Michigan Technological University at No. 116, Andrews University in Southwest Michigan at No. 168, Western Michigan University at No. 173 and Central Michigan University at No. 194.• The Port Huron City Council approved a proposal by the Port Huron Museum to sell four more of its paintings by Canadian artists for $4 ,000 as part of an effort to fund improvements, the local Times Herald reported. In 2013, the council approved selling 11 paintings for $23,000.• The Genesee County Land Bank was awarded $2.6 million from the federal government to demolish vacant houses and remove blight in Flint’s Civic Park neighborhood, The Associated Press reported. • The website Business Insider says the Grand Rapids suburb of East Grand Rapids is the most educated town in Michigan, notes. The city of 11,000 has the highest percentage of adults over 25 with at least a bachelor’s degree — 77.5 percent. Left unexplained: How a town could muster up enough creativity to append a compass direction to the name of the closest big city; say, „Yes, we’ll call ourselves East Grand Rapids”; then be called the smartest city in Michigan.

West Michigan town prepares for warm climate – without saying so

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