Restore Our Water International (ROWI) and Sierra Club Canada have released criticism of the International Joint Commission (IJC) Draft Great Lakes Regional Adaptive Management Plan for solving the low water levels in Lakes Michigan and Huron. The plan calls for improvements in monitoring the effects of climate change on the Great Lakes, and further management of water levels and flows throughout the system. But ROWI and the Sierra Club insist that the plan offers no “distinct actions to remedy persistent low water levels on Lakes Michigan and Huron, including Georgian Bay.”
Mary Muter, chair of the Great Lakes Section of Sierra Club Canada, had this to say in the press release: “At no time should adaptive management be used as a surrogate for the restoration of the natural water level ranges on Lakes Michigan and Huron that have been lowered by water loss caused by the increased conveyance capacity of the St. Clair River. Because of the IJC’s failure to tell the two federal governments to fix the St. Clair River issue, massive expenditures of funds are being called for in both the U.S. and Canada to dredge harbours and marinas across the Lakes Michigan and Huron basin. The mayors on Georgian Bay alone have put the cost of protecting the local economy by ensuring water access and municipal water supply at $500 million for this year alone.”
ROWI is a recently formed organization comprised of a number of stakeholders from both the United States and Canada who advocate for the restoration of natural water levels across all of the great lakes, with special emphasis paid to Lakes Michigan and Huron.