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The Environmental Department’s mission is to protect the health and wellbeing of present and future members of the Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians, by protecting the environment on which they depend.

The Environmental Department provides solutions and information on environmental issues and concerns affecting the tribe, tribal members and tribal enterprises.

  • Water: Water lab, surface water, and drinking water
  • Native Species: Seed lab, Invasive plants, trees and bugs, Native plants and trees
  • GIS: GIS lab, GPS equipment, map database



We work to ensure that decisions are made for the environment with the seventh generation in mind. We work in partnership with other governments at the local, state and federal levels to deliver programs as diverse as:

  • Invasive plant control
  • Solid waste and recycling solutions
  • Tribal utilities service (water and wastewater)
  • Surface water quality monitoring
  • Air quality monitoring and indoor air issues (mold, radon)
  • Great Lakes and St. Marys River water and sediment cleanup issues
  • Fish contaminant studies
  • Environmental health and safety
  • Hazardous spills response coordination
  • Energy conservation and renewable energy
  • Tree planting
  • Native species seed banking
  • Wetland permitting and planning
  • Environmental assessments for land use changes

The Environmental program staff work with grants and a small amount of tribal funding to provide these services. We’re especially proud of our three laboratory-based programs: Water, Seed/Soil and GIS.


An important component of our work is outreach to tribal members and the larger community. We know we can’t solve Mother Earth’s environmental problems ourselves—we need you! You can join an environmental club and help plant trees or recycle electronics, you can take action just in your own home, and you can plan a career in environmental science or policy, and we want to help you do that!

Watch for our annual Open House in December, or call to arrange a visit! Watch for our articles in the tribal newspaper, Win Awenen Nisitotung.

Sault Tribe Environmental Department Brownfields Program: The Sault Tribe Environmental Department Brownfields Program helps promote revitalization, redevelopment and reuse of property that may have been complicated by the presence or potential presence of hazardous substances, pollutants or contaminants. For more information, see our Brownfields Program page.

Contact Information

For more information on Environmental Department services, contact:


206 Greenough
Sault Ste. Marie, MI 49783





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Photo by Ken Bosma / CC BY