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GLIN==> Major Detroit River Conference Proceedings Available

For Immediate Release – January 28, 2002

Dr. Jennifer Read, Michigan Sea Grant, (734) 936-3622.
Dr. John Hartig, Greater Detroit American Heritage River Initiative,
(313) 568-9594.


Windsor, Ontario and Detroit, Michigan - The 2001 tercentennial provided
a unique opportunity to recognize the people of Detroit and Windsor,
whose historic achievements have laid the foundation for our future
prosperity.  Detroit 300 was a binational, yearlong celebration of our
history, culture, ethnic diversity, natural resources, commerce and
trade.  In the spirit of this celebration, the State of the Strait
conference was held on March 27, 2001 at the University of Windsor.

Released today, the conference proceedings, titled “State of the Strait:
Status and Trends of the Detroit River Ecosystem,” review the history
and status of the Detroit River and discuss prospects for protecting
this ecosystem.  Key conference recommendations include: Canadian and
U.S. government agencies should develop and maintain a comprehensive and
systematic monitoring program for the Detroit River; management agencies
should prepare a quantitative ecosystem indicator report for the Detroit
River within the next two years; and all universities and management
organizations should promote coordinated management through a binational
Detroit River data archive and clearinghouse such as the Detroit River
Data Retrieval, Exchange, Archival and Management System (DREAMS)
developed by the Great Lakes Institute for Environmental Research
(GLIER) at the University of Windsor.

“We have learned that the state of our strait has improved considerably
since the 1960s, however, more must be done to protect our river — our
economy and quality of life depend on it,” says U.S. Congressman John D.
Dingell. “Coordinated monitoring and timely reporting are essential for
our continued progress.  I am therefore calling on the Greater Detroit
American Heritage River Initiative and the Canadian Heritage River
Initiative to convene another State of the Strait Conference in two
years to evaluate our progress and celebrate our Heritage River and
International Wildlife Refuge.”

The conference proceedings are also available on the GLIER website at
http://www.uwindsor.ca/greatlakes.  GLIER is a research consortium whose
efforts are directed toward understanding, restoring, rehabilitating and
protecting Great Lakes ecosystems.

In 1998, the Detroit River was designated as one of 14 American Heritage
Rivers in the United States.  The American Heritage River Initiative is
a multi-stakeholder program to support the work of local communities in
enhancing economic development, promoting environmental stewardship, and
celebrating their history and culture.  On July 19, 2001 the Detroit
River also received a Canadian Heritage River designation, making it the
first international heritage river system in North America.  On December
21, 2001 President George Bush signed legislation creating the Detroit
River International Wildlife Refuge, the first of its kind in North

Jennifer Read, Ph.D.
Assistant Director
Michigan Sea Grant College Program
2200 Bonisteel Blvd
Ann Arbor, MI 48109
p: 734-936-3622
f: 734-647-0768

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