Coming Early 2019

Waterfront Porch: Reclaiming Detroit's Industrial Waterfront as a Gathering Place For All

The story of how Detroit is turning to the Detroit River and building a new waterfront porch, called the Detroit RiverWalk, to help revitalize the city and region, and to help foster a more sustainable future.

July 2018

Cleanup efforts revitalize River Raisin, Ottawa River

“The city is now rebranding itself as a vibrant urban center with an ecologically significant river, historical assets, a new national park, a state park, and an international wildlife refuge within its city limits — all connected by greenway trails,” said Mr. Hartig, the first Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge manager and an author who recently served as a Fulbright Scholar in Ontario.

Read More Here

River cleanup helps Monroe achieve environmental, economic benefits

Bald eagles have returned to the River Raisin Watershed and new and long-absent fish species appear in the river, said John Hartig, an author of the case study. Businesses and restaurants in downtown Monroe are embracing the revitalized river with new outdoor patios and improved building exteriors creating a riverfront influence, Hartig said.

“The river’s identity is also at the core of new recreational and historical initiatives, with people enjoying new gathering places and trails along the river banks,” he said in a press release.

Read More Here

April 2018

Clear Water: Detroit's River Revival

John's book titled "Burning Rivers" is the focus of a new documentary titled "Clear Water: Detroit's River Revival."

Hartig told Great Lakes Now, “Many people still don’t know the revival of the Detroit River represents one of the most remarkable ecological recovery stories in North America. Hopefully, the film will help get this story out.”

Read More Here

January 2018

John Hartig: A Great Lakes Icon Retires

He created North A­­merica’s only International Wildlife Refuge. He says, “We took 25 people from Canada and 25 people from the United States and we said, ‘What do you want for this region?’ That group of people came up with a conservation vision, calling for something that no one else in America had. Congressman John Dingell picked it up. Canada’s prime minister and Peter Stroh got involved. Canada followed up. And it became law. And today we stand with North America’s only International Wildlife Refuge. But the most important thing was that vision.”

Read More Here


Detroit, MI

Waterloo, ON

Dr. John Hartig

John Hartig


March 2019

Detroit Garden Center Leading by Example

Read Article Here

February 2019

Inspiring a Sense of Wonder through Raptors

Read Article Here

December 2018

Institute's First Grad Returns as Visiting Scholar

Read Article Here


Great Lakes scientist, Fulbright Scholar, author,  and conservationist working to accelerate the sustainability transition

Waterfront Porch

Bringing Conservation to Cities

Burning Rivers

Honoring Our Detroit River, Caring for Our Home

Under RAPs

Copyright @ All Rights Reserved