Freshwater Weekly 8/31/17
This week: help stop a proposed nuclear waste dump on Lake Huron + Lake Erie algae watch + 5 ways to protect the Great Lakes + more ways you can make a difference.
NUCLEAR WASTE ON THE SHORES OF LAKE HURON?
Plans for a proposed nuclear waste dump in Ontario—less than a mile from the Lake Huron shore—have stalled as the Canadian government requests more information about the proposal.
Opposition has been swift and decisive on both sides of the border: 224 resolutions opposing the plan have been passed in jurisdictions representing more than 23 million Canadian and American citizens.
If radioactive wastes make it into Great Lakes waterways, there is no technology to recover it at this scale. Radioactive material would slowly spread throughout the basin, and remain there for thousands of years.
SPEAK OUT! Add your voice to the chorus of opposition to a nuclear waste dump on Lake Huron. Get more background information on our blog and then tell the Canadian government to reject this proposal. US residents click here to take action; Canadian residents click here.
LAKE ERIE ALGAE WATCH
Last weekend, Toledo, Ohio’s Water Quality Dashboard moved from “clear” to “watch” when the presence of toxic algae was detected in the city’s untreated water supply. Water quality quickly returned to “clear,” but the event is an important reminder of the trouble Lake Erie faces.
Each summer brings toxic algal blooms caused primarily by runoff pollution from large-scale agricultural operations around the lake. In 2015 Ohio, Michigan, and Ontario committed to reducing the amount of runoff pollution—specifically phosphorus—flowing into western Lake Erie by 40%, but little progress has been made toward this goal. Now environmental groups are calling for Lake Erie to be declared “impaired” under the US Clean Water Act, which would initiate tighter controls on nutrients entering the lake.
Toxic algal blooms have made landfall in parts of Ohio and Ontario this summer, leading to beach closures and other recreational restrictions. For up-to-date information on the blooms, you can view the latest algae forecast here.
5 THINGS YOU CAN DO TO PROTECT THE GREAT LAKES
Small actions can make a big difference! At Freshwater Future, we help thousands of communities around the Great Lakes protect their local waters so that, together, we can protect the whole of the Great Lakes. Individual actions are powerful, too! This week we shared our top five little things with big impact that you can do to help keep our lakes healthy and clean. Read them here.
There are lots of simple ways to help protect our waters. Find more at freshwaterfuture.org/take-action.