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:

Habitat Watch # 234 Great Lakes United October 21- October 26, 2001

Report from the International Joint Commission’s 11th biennial public forum:

The one-month postponement of International Joint Commission’s 11th biennial meeting due to the events of September 11th reduced attendance at the Montreal meeting to about 300 people. But energy was high, the presentations eye opening, and the public comments extensive. Here are some of the highlights from the public comment sessions.

The office of Canada’s Auditor General, Shelia Fraser, gave a scathing critique of the Canadian governments progress on environmental protection, telling the audience that federal efforts to protect and restore the environment have lost momentum, the lack of action indicates complacency and resignation within the government, and resources are out of sync with the needs of the region. The result: a waning federal role in protection, impaired monitoring, no effective long-term strategies, and a failure to meet the commitments under the

Canada-U.S. Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement.

The 2000 Report of the Auditor General of Canada can be found at: http://www.oag-bvg.gc.ca/domino/reports.nsf/html/00menu_e.html, or can be obtained by request at: (613) 952-0213, ext 5000, or: distribution@oag-bvg.gc.ca

During the 2-hour public forum, about 30 individuals and public representatives addressed governmental representatives and the four IJC commissioners (two U.S. positions still remain vacant pending appointment by the U.S. administration). Great Lakes United members provided a critique of the various documents and plans currently under consideration for the Great Lakes  St. Lawrence River. Critiques included: the IJC Priorities for 2001-2003, the United States and Canadian governmental responses to the 10th biennial report of the IJC, the draft 5-year plans for Great Lakes restoration in the U.S. (the “Great Lakes Strategy”) and Canada (the Canada-Ontario Agreement), and the Canadian-U.S. State Of the Lake Ecosystem Conferences 2001 report.

A similar message ran through most of the critiques presented:  none of the documents, priorities and plans are truly strategic and action oriented in terms of the challenges ahead for the region.

Speakers highlighted the myriad pressures and problems our region’s human, fish and wildlife populations are facing, including:

·       The push for more nuclear power, oil and gas drilling, and coal burning ·        Human population increases ·     Increases in consumption of land, water, wood (both standing trees and sunken logs), energy and goods ·  Continual production of high volumes of toxic wastes ·   The lack of a program and subsidy shift to renewable energy and clean production ·       Exotic species invasions  ·      Widespread habitat fragmentation ·       Aquatic habitat destruction from dredging and pipeline construction, including the Millennium pipeline.

Speakers clearly stated that sufficient studies have taken place. Support and concrete action is needed now for the critical and urgent need for environmental restoration and pollution prevention.

The public asked the IJC to push the governments for aggressive, result-oriented restoration and pollution prevention strategies consistent with principles of Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement. Not just more programs for plugging every gap in the data.

Great Lakes United’s Habitat and Biodiversity task force produces Habitat Watch with support from the George Gund Foundation and GLU coalition members. The task force is committed to protecting natural areas, wildlife, and strong conservation laws across the Great Lakes-St. Lawrence River ecosystem. To join the coalition, subscribe, or send stories, contact GLU at: (716) 886-0142; fax: (716) 886-0303; or email: jen@glu.org. Past issues of Habitat Watch can be found at: http://www.sustain.org/Bulletins/index.cfm

Jennifer Nalbone Habitat and Biodiversity Coordinator Great Lakes United 1300 Elmwood Avenue Cassety Hall- Buffalo State College Buffalo, NY 14222

ph: (716) 886-0142  fax:-0303

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