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Environment Topics

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of the Great Lakes Region

What's New | Overview | General Resources | Agencies & Organizations | Discuss

 
What's New
Friends of Detroit River honor Congressman John Dingell for environmental legacy
The News-Herald (11/20)
During the 58 years John Dingell served in the U.S. House of Representatives, the Democrat who represents Michiganís 12th District has been considered by many to be a friend of those who place a high importance on environmental issues.

Freight train derails in eastern Quebec; Conductor missing
The Wall Street Journal (11/6)
A train derailed Thursday following a suspected landslide in eastern Quebec, spilling diesel fuel into a local river.

TransCanada formally applies to NEB for Energy East pipeline approval
CBC News (10/30)
TransCanada has officially filed for government approval for the $12 billion Energy East pipeline project with the National Energy Board.

COMMENTARY: Lisa Wozniak: Protecting Pure Michigan begins in the voting booth
MLive (10/28)
Protecting the Great Lakes state begins in the voting booth.

State seeks input on lake islands management plan
Fox 28-TV - East Lansing, MI (10/26)
Officials with the Michigan Department of Natural Resources are seeking input from the public on management plans for northern Lake Michigan islands.

Experts desperate to keep flying carp out of Great Lakes
NBC Nightly News (10/17)
Reproducing by the millions and eating many of the native species, there are more flying carp in the Illinois River than anywhere else in the world.

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Overview
The environment of the Great Lakes region is blessed with huge forests and wilderness areas, rich agricultural land, hundreds of tributaries and thousands of smaller lakes, and extensive mineral deposits. The region's glacial history and the tremendous influence of the lakes themselves create unique conditions that support a wealth of biological diversity, including more than 130 rare species and ecosystems.

The environment supports a world-class fishery and a variety of wildlife, such as white-tailed deer, beaver, muskrat, weasel, fox, black bear, bobcat, moose and other furbearing animals. Bird populations thrive on the various terrains, some migrating south in the winter, others making permanent homes. An estimated 180 species of fish are native to the Great Lakes, including small- and large-mouth bass, muskellunge, northern pike, lake herring, whitefish, walleye and lake trout. Rare species making their home in the Great Lakes region include the world's last known population of the white catspaw pearly mussel, the copper redhorse fish and the Kirtland's warbler.

The region's sand dunes, coastal marshes, rocky shorelines, lakeplain prairies, savannas, forests, fens, wetlands and other landscapes contain features that are either unique or best represented withink the Great Lakes basin. For example, the world's largest freshwater dunes line the shores of Lake Michigan.

Over the course of history, many types of pollution have inflicted and been reduced in the region, yet significant challenges remain. These range from threats to divert water out of the Great Lakes basin to the introduction of nonindigenous invasive species and airborne toxics into the basin. Protection of water quality and sustainable development remain long-term goals.

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General Resources
Great Lakes Atlas
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
This Environmental Atlas and Resource Book is an excellent resource on the Great Lakes, including physical characteristics, natural processes, people, concerns, joint management and new directions (mirrored on Environment Canada's site).

Great Lakes Radio Consortium
The Great Lakes Radio Consortium produces environmentally focused radio features and news featured on more than 100 public radio stations around the Great Lakes region and several national radio programs.

Illinois Natural Resources Information Network
Illinois Department of Natural Resources (DNR)
Provides natural resource-related information to the citizens of Illinois so that individuals and groups can make informed decisions about natural resource management and policy.

Science & The Environment Bulletin
Environment Canada
This bimonthly publication provides information on leading-edge environmental science and technology. Includes collections on habitat, pollution, species at risk, water and related topics.

Software for Environmental Awareness
United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Region 5 and Purdue University produce free interactive software programs on environmental topics.

Summary of Environmental Law in North America
Commission for Environmental Cooperation (CEC)
The CEC created this summary to improve public access to the environmental law of the three parties to the North American Free Trade Agreement; i.e., Canada, Mexico and the United States.

Visualizing the Great Lakes
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Great Lakes National Program Office (GLNPO)
GLNPO has an extensive collection of images from around the Great Lakes that is available for you to use.

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Updated: November 28, 2014
Maintained by: Christine Manninen, manninen@glc.org
Selected Photos: Copyright ©John and Ann Mahan
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