Counties pan lake-level management plan

http://m.thedailynewsonline.com/mobile/news/article_c3948f74-8cbd-11e4-8507-dbaf0fe7aad8.html

Johnson told her colleagues that IJC Plan 2014 would negate the benefits from dredging completed this fall by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers dredging of the Oak Orchard Harbor.

The dredging removed more than 10 years of sediment from a federal channel actively used by boating, sport-fishing and recreation activities. Allowing for higher-highs and lower-lows in lake levels would wash that maintenance away, Johnson said.

“Dredging our harbors cost well over $1 million, and yet the federal government-appointed IJC has put forth a plan that would devastate our harbors,” said Johnson, who  cited estimates of $3.5 million in damages to shoreline protection systems. “This is government at its worst.”

Negotiations continue….

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WXXI News | The Public Media news source for Rochester, NY and the Finger Lakes

The International Joint Commission oversees the management of Lake Ontario. For fifty years, a hydro-electric dam has regulated the naturally fluctuating shoreline. Frank Bevacqua of the IJC says scientific advancements show that the existing plan is harmful to the environment.

“The remaining 64,000 acres of coastal wetlands along Lake Ontario and the St. Lawrence River have been degraded.”

In response, the IJC has put forth Plan 2014

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http://m.wxxinews.org/?utm_referrer=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.google.com%2F#mobile/23981

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Lake of the Woods Plan

The IJC wants to hear from you before submitting its recommendations to the Governments of Canada and the United States. The International Lake of the Woods Basin Water Quality Plan of Study is available for review and comment for a 30-day period, from November 12 to December 11, 2014.

See more at: http://www.ijc.org/en_/LOWWQPOS#sthash.434NiC6a.dpuf

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Public lecture on danger of microplastics to Great Lakes | Windsor Star

http://blogs.windsorstar.com/news/public-lecture-on-danger-of-microplastics-to-great-lakes

Skin, beauty and bath care products can contain the tiny bits of plastic that go down the drain and end up being flushed through the municipal sewage treatment system and into lakes and into the bellies of fish.

“It doesn’t go away,” said Parent. Toothpastes and deodorants are among the other common products that can contain microplastics, although some manufacturers are avoiding their use.

Once entering the Great Lakes waterway, the microplastics not only become a threat to aquatic life, but also endanger and become a contaminant for humans through the food chain.

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DNR adds to list of unwanted aquatic invasive species

http://content.govdelivery.com/accounts/MIDNR/bulletins/da0807

Excerpt:

The Department of Natural Resources today announced the addition of seven species to Michigan’s prohibited species list of aquatic invasive species. An additional species already on the list was also modified from a prohibited species to a restricted species.

Any species considered for listing as prohibited or restricted must be not native to Michigan. Prohibited species generally are not present or are in very limited areas, whereas restricted species are generally widespread and naturalized within the state. 

The decision came during the Nov. 6 meeting of the Natural Resources Commission, where DNR Director Keith Creagh signed Invasive Species Order Amendment No. 1 of 2014

Prior to this order there were 33 aquatic species listed as prohibited or restricted. The following species were added to the prohibited species list:

•  Stone moroko – part of the minnow family, this species is a known carrier of a parasite that can negatively impact other fishes. 
•  Zander – a close relative of the walleye, this species could compete with the native fish or reproduce with it and create a hybrid. 
•  Wels catfish – this fish is considered a serious danger to native fish populations. 
•  Killer shrimp – this species is an aggressive predator and could severely threaten the trophic levels of the Great Lakes by preying on a range of invertebrates. 
•  Yabby – this large crayfish would negatively impact other crayfish species. 
•  Golden mussel – similar to zebra and quagga mussels, this species has destructive qualities that would threaten native biodiversity. 
•  Red swamp crayfish – this species can quickly dominate waterbodies and is virtually impossible to eradicate. 

Additionally, rusty crayfish were moved from prohibited to restricted classification to allow for their limited possession for the purpose of destroying them for consumption, fertilizer or trash. This species already is widespread throughout the state, yet regulations previously didn’t allow for the collection of them for consumptive purposes.
 

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IJC to stage panel discussion, gather feedback on Lake Erie’s algal bloom woes | Windsor Star

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IJC Acting Canadian co-chairman Gordon Walker will moderate the panel discussion.

“Lake Erie is clearly in trouble,” Walker said. “We need an active and informed citizenry as well as commitment from all levels of government to fix the problems.

http://blogs.windsorstar.com/news/ijc-to-stage-panel-discussion-gather-feedback-on-lake-eries-algal-bloom-woes

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Toledo Drinking Water Crisis

Algae blooms in Lake Erie creating toxic release poisoning area water supplies, namely Toledo Ohio. IJC reports:

“It is unacceptable that nutrient pollution has been allowed to contaminate Lake Erie so significantly that the drinking water for more than 500,000 northwestern Ohio residents has been compromised. In the wake of this crisis, federal and state agencies will have an opportunity to act to stem the flow of nutrients into Lake Erie. We urge agencies to learn from this crisis and act swiftly. A great place to start is enacting the recommendations put forth by the International Joint Commission in their report released this spring, “A Balanced Diet for Lake Erie: Reducing Phosphorus Loadings and Harmful Algal Blooms.” Delaying action will only cause continued harm to the lake and more crises like the one Toledo is facing today.”

 

https://www.greatlakes.org/ToledoWaterCrisis

IJC releases draft of plan for Lake of the Woods | Kenora Daily Miner and News

Excerpt on efforts of IJC on Lake level issues resolution:

“We would like to thank the experts working in the basin on these issues, the International Multi Agency Arrangement partners, the International Rainy-Lake of the Woods Watershed Board and its community and industry advisory groups and Canadian and U.S. indigenous communities for their contribution to the draft water quality plan of study,” said the board’s Canadian study co-chairman Glenn Benoy.

The over 100-page plan is quite detailed and lays out the principles and approaches to be taken while studying the many issues facing the Lake of the Woods basin on both sides of the border.

It includes frameworks with how to interact and involve all of the different governments, communities, private interest and First Nations, which all have a stake in the lake and the research being done.

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Legislators more confident after D.C. face-time

Property owners and sport fishing industry voice their concerns to Senators about the IJC Plan 2014 for Great Lakes. Stakeholders have forum with aid of International Joint Commission. Excerpt follows:

“In a conference call with county leaders, Johnson said they stressed their concerns about the plan and its impacts on the southwestern shoreline with legislative aides to Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand and Sen. Charles Schumer.

“It was apparent they were well-versed on the subject,” Johnson said,” and they indicated that they feel no decisions should be made in the short-term … it was a very productive hour.”

Later, Collins’ office hosted the delegates for a meeting with representatives from the State Department’s Office of Canadian Affairs and Bureau of Western Hemisphere Affairs, two groups who will weigh in when the federal government considers the Lake Ontario water level regulation plan.

Godfrey said Collins backed their opposition.

“He told them (Plan 2014) is in violation of the IJC charter, that no plan should result in disproportionate loss to any area from the plan,” Godfrey said. “It needs to be thrown out, let’s not waste any more time on it.”

Johnson said the trip was successful in presenting a view countering the IJC’s, which she said was based on out-of-date info — from the use of old Census data to documents addressing how the plan would effect the long-gone Fast Ferry between Rochester and Toronto.

“Our mission was to tell them that their study group has outdated information,” Johnson said. “I think we really educated them.”

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Legislators bash IJC plan, say measure will harm county – The Palladium-Times : Front Page Continued

From Palladium:

“County legislators passed a resolution Thursday urging the U.S. Congress to reject a recent proposal that some officials worry could increase erosion and cause property damage along the shores of Lake Ontario.”

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