Great Lakes Environmental Directory Great Lakes Great Lakes environment Great Lakes grants exotic species water pollution water export drilling environment Great Lakes pollution Superior Michigan Huron Erie Ontario ecology Great Lakes issues wetlands Great Lakes wetlands Great Lakes Great Lakes environment Great Lakes watershed water quality exotic species Great Lakes grants water pollution water export oil gas drilling environment environmental Great Lakes pollution Lake Superior Lake Michigan Lake Huron Lake Erie Lake Ontario Great Lakes ecology Great Lakes issues Great Lakes wetlands Great Lakes Resources Great Lakes activist Great Lakes environmental organizations Great Lakes Aquatic Habitat air pollution alien species threatened rare endangered species ecological Great Lakes information Success Stories Great Lakes Directory Home/News Great Lakes Calendar Great Lakes jobs/volunteering Search Great Lakes Organizations Take Action! Contact Us Resources/Links Great Lakes Issues Great Lakes News Article About Us Networking Services

Great Lakes Article:

Editorial: The lakes' greatness is in danger
The Sault Star (Opsrey Media)
Published May 10, 2007


How low's the water mama? Folks living along the shores of Lake Superior could be singing this parody of the Johnny Cash song as they watch water levels fall. It hasn't been lower since 1926. It has fallen 46 centimetres below its long-term average and 32 cm lower than just a year ago, reports the International Lake Superior Board of Control.

Who cares, you may ask?

The answer is we all should.

In the short term, dropping water levels negatively impacts recreational and commercial boaters. The Duluth News Tribune reported recently that "low water levels are restricting access to Lake Superior for big recreational boats, especially sailboats that have 6- to 8-foot keels." The shipping industry is also affected because it could be forced to lessen loads. Low water levels also pose a hazard to animal habitats. It may become difficult for fish like walleye and northern pike to spawn.

All of this is bad news for the tourism industry and for consumers of products shipped through the Great Lakes.

The long-term issue is one that is in the forefront of today's public discussion - global warming.

A group of University of Minnesota scientists last month said global warming over the past three decades has brought change faster to Lake Superior than to its surroundings.

Less winter ice cover means Superior loses more water to evaporation and gets more sun, contributing to the overall warming of the lake. The situation has gone beyond a statistical blip. There's a trend developing here.

The levels have been below average now for almost nine years, which is the longest stretch below average on Lake Superior since we started keeping records in the early 1900s.

What can we do to fight back?

First, we should take the issue of global warming seriously.

Second, Canadians and Americans should once again stress opposition to any grand plans for water diversion and taking water from the Great Lakes.

Water levels naturally go up and down, but throw human interference into the mix and nobody is certain what will happen. When human interference happens on a grand scale, over a long period of time, the results are often not good.

Let's be careful that we don't take the "Great" out of our wonderful Great Lakes.
This information is posted for nonprofit educational purposes, in accordance with U.S. Code Title 17, Chapter 1,Sec. 107 copyright laws.
For more information go to: http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for
purposes of your own that go beyond "fair use," you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.


Great Lakes environmental information

Return to Great Lakes Directory Home/ Site Map