Editorial: Slow the flow of Great Lakes
through St. Clair River
The Bay City Times (MI)
Published February 11th, 2005
There's a hole at the bottom of Lake Huron that's draining
it and Lake Michigan like never before.
A report commissioned by a Canadian homeowners group
says erosion in the St. Clair River between Port Huron
and Sarnia is causing lake levels to drop.
It's something that Canadian and U.S. engineers ought
to examine in more depth.
The St. Clair River is the only natural outlet for the
upper Great Lakes of Michigan and Huron.
The more water that can go down the river, the less that
stays in the lakes. Natural silting used to regulate the
volume of water flowing through the river.
But, the study says, after repeated dredging, the St.
Clair River bottom began to erode - right where Lake Huron
flows into the river.
The St. Clair River is 60 feet deep in places now. That's
twice the depth needed for commercial shipping.
The report suggests that large rocks dumped into river
might stop the erosion and protect the lakes.
That idea has a lot of appeal to us. The coastline of
the entire Lower Peninsula of Michigan - including Saginaw
Bay - is at stake.
The International Joint Commission on the Great Lakes
has the report now.
We'd suggest passing it along quickly to federal engineers
on both sides of the border for review.
If boatloads of boulders could slow that river's flow,
let's start loading the barges.
Before our Great Lakes drain away to puny ponds.