Pressure is mounting on the U.S. and Canadian governments to explore ways to restore water levels on Lakes Michigan and Huron that have been lowered nearly two feet due to historic dredging on the St. Clair River. The two lakes, which are actually one body of water connected at the Straits of Mackinac, have been below their long-term average for more than a decade, and forecasters say in the coming months they could plunge below their record low.
Now an organization of 90 mayors representing more than 15 million residents in cities across the Great Lakes region is telling the International Joint Commission that it is "dissatisfied" with a recent study that determined restoring lake levels by installing some type of structure to repair damage done to the St. Clair River would be a costly project that could take decades and ultimately do more harm than good.
(Mississauga) -- The urban river valley designation announced today by Premier Dalton McGuinty enables municipalities to add publicly-owned lands to Ontario’s Greenbelt and ensures that important water connections between the Greenbelt and Lake Ontario will be protected. For Mississauga, growing the Greenbelt along the Credit River provides the greatest protection for these often stressed urban features.
A Greenbelt designation would draw a permanent, legal boundary around a local urban river valley. Future municipal councils could only expand this boundary, but under the Greenbelt Act, 2005, the area of protection cannot shrink.
“By adding our Credit River valley lands to the Greenbelt we are providing the greatest protection available to these treasured natural features,” said Rosemary Keenan, Chair of Sierra Club Peel Group.
River Network, a US-based organization dedicated to protecting and restoring rivers have released a report on the water footprint of electricity, explaining how power plants of all types (nuclear, coal and natural gas) draw from our vital water resources to produce electricity. The report investigates how power production puts tremendous stress on our watersheds, including the Great Lakes. The demand for “burning” freshwater sources from electricity production also leads to a range of pollution and water scarcity concerns, which could be assuaged by introducing more water-efficient ways of generating power. Although the findings of this report are situated within a US context, the “burning” of water sources is a global occurrence, and the content presented is valuable for grasping an understanding of this phenomena nonetheless.