Freshwater Weekly 11/16/17
This week: what makes the Great Lakes so great + help stop a Michigan bill to weaken invasive species protections + Canadian Great Lakes Day + Wisconsin repeals ban on sulfide mining + more ways you can make a difference.
WHAT’S SO GREAT ABOUT THE GREAT LAKES?
We all know the Great Lakes contain 20% of the Earth’s fresh water, and we all have our own favorite spots around the basin that make the Great Lakes so special for each of us, but what else makes the Great Lakes so great? Here’s a great 4-minute video on the incredible natural wonder of these lakes, and the importance of protecting them.
TELL MICHIGAN’S GOVERNOR NOT TO WEAKEN BALLAST WATER POLLUTION STANDARDS
Two weeks ago, we told you about a bill being considered by Michigan’s legislature that would weaken the state’s ballast water protections. Unfortunately, despite the outcry from Freshwater Future supporters like you, House Bill 5095 passed the Michigan House by a vote of 66-42 and the Senate by a vote of 25-11. The bill would effectively repeal the standards passed in 2005 with near unanimous bipartisan support, leaving us to rely exclusively on weaker federal standards for ballast water pollution.
You don’t have to be a Michigan resident to take action! Click here to tell Governor Snyder that we can’t afford to weaken our standards. Ask him to veto this bill.
HELP US PROTECT ALL THE WATERS IN OUR BASIN
If you shop on Amazon, you can help protect lakes, rivers, wetlands, and shorelines all around the Great Lakes just by starting at Amazon Smile. Shoppers can designate a charity to receive a percentage of every purchase they make, so your holiday shopping supports our work here at Freshwater Future! It’s quick and easy to sign up. Just start at Amazon Smile, and look for us as Great Lakes Aquatic Habitat Network and Fund, Inc. (our legal name).
CANADIAN GREAT LAKES DAY
Next week, as US residents gear up for Thanksgiving, our friends across the border will gather in Ottawa to advocate for increased investment and programming to protect the waters in our Great Lakes region. Freshwater Future’s own Tony Maas was instrumental in developing this event, and will be in attendance. You can learn more about Great Lakes-St. Lawrence Parliament Hill Day here.
WISCONSIN LEGISLATURE REPEALS MORATORIUM ON SULFIDE MINING
Environmental groups and activists—including Freshwater Future and supporters like you—fought long and hard to maintain Wisconsin’s popular “Prove It First” law, which has effectively acted as a moratorium on sulfide mining in the state since 1998. Unfortunately, the Wisconsin State Senate passed a bill last week that repeals the law, removing the only formidable barrier to establishing new sulfide mines there. Governor Walker is expected to sign the bill. Freshwater Future will continue to keep tabs on mining in Wisconsin as the effects of this bill play out in the coming months.