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News and Events

May 16, 2017

U.S. federal budget bill preserves funding for GLRI in FY2017

On May 1, the U.S. Congress passed the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2017, an omnibus bill that funds the federal government through FY2017. The bill, which President Trump signed into law on May 5, funds GLRI at $300 million for FY2017 (the same funding as in the FY2016 budget). Congress’ decision to fully fund GLRI for FY2017 suggests that Congress may disagree with the President’s budget priorities pertaining to Great Lakes restoration.

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May 3, 2017

Great Lakes Economic Forum 2017 features US Ambassador to Canada

On April 25 and 26, 2017, the Council of the Great Lakes Region (CGLR) convened the third annual Great Lakes Economic Forum in Detroit. The forum was attended by representatives of federal, state, and provincial governments, nonprofit organizations, academic institutions, businesses, and trade associations from the US and Canada. The purpose of the Forum was to discuss the Great Lakes-St. Lawrence economy and to share ideas and insights on how to enhance cross-border collaboration. Previous conferences were convened in Chicago (2015) and Toronto (2016).

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April 17, 2017

New CGLI initiative will explore regional sustainability

CGLI will launch a new initiative this year that will enable industry to develop a regional sustainability strategy for the Great Lakes region. The strategy may consist of a framework, set of principles, suite of metrics, general guidelines, or some other mechanism that embodies principles of sustainability specific to the Great Lakes region.

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US and Canada announce schedule for implementing strategies for all “round 1” chemicals of mutual concern

U.S. EPA and Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC) are developing and preparing to implement binational management strategies for substances identified as “round 1” chemicals of mutual concern (CMCs). The agencies’ timeline currently contemplates that the strategies will be finalized and implemented by the end of 2017.

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April 4, 2017

CGLI urges the IJC to communicate science in the IJC’s Triennial Assessment of Progress

On April 3, 2017, CGLI submitted general comments on the International Joint Commission’s draft First Triennial Assessment of Progress (TAP) on Great Lakes Water Quality. In the comments, CGLI supported the narrative style of the TAP, which is intended to be a mechanism for reporting the outcomes of Great Lakes management actions to the general public, but urged the IJC to tie the outcomes communicated to the public to specific monitoring data, research, and other scientific information.

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March 28, 2017

CGLI and the Great Lakes Metro Chambers Coalition urge continued funding for the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative

The FY2018 budget proposal that the Trump Administration released on March 16, 2017 eliminates funding for the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI), which was authorized by the US Congress in 2016 at $300 million per year for five years. Previous information suggested that the Administration would propose to cut funding for GLRI by 97%, from $300 million to $10 million. CGLI and the Great Lakes Metro Chambers Coalition have joined together to urge the US Congress to reject the President’s budget proposal to the extent it eliminates funding for GLRI.

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February 17, 2017

CGLI participates in Great Lakes Environmental Summit (Washington D.C.)

On February 7 and 8, CGLI participated in a Great Lakes Environmental Summit in Washington DC. The Summit is an annual event organized by the Northeast-Midwest Institute that provides an opportunity for the Great Lakes policy community to meet with US Congressional representatives and staff to discuss environmental program priorities for the Great Lakes region.

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January 17, 2017

Binational chemical management strategies for PCBs and HBCD in development

EPA and Environment and Climate Change Canada are preparing draft management strategies for addressing two chemicals of mutual concern that were identified under Annex 3 of the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement (polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and hexabromocyclododecane (HBCD)). CGLI’s Chemical Management Work Group is reviewing early drafts of the strategies.

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CGLI and LimnoTech to highlight industry data needs and interests at IAGLR Conference

CGLI has partnered with LimnoTech to organize a series of speakers and a panel discussion at the upcoming Conference on Great Lakes Research to be held at Cobo Hall in Detroit, MI from May 16 to 19, 2017. The goal of the session is to discuss how industry intersects with the Great Lakes, industry’s unique data needs, and any recent monitoring data or research collected by industry that might further our understanding of the Great Lakes ecosystem.

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NGO Coalition seeks Impairment designations for Western Lake Erie Basin

On December 19, a coalition of environmental and business groups issued a notice of intent to sue EPA to force the agency to approve or disapprove impaired water designations submitted by the states of Michigan and Ohio under Section 303(d) of the Clean Water Act. The coalition contends that EPA has failed to perform its duty to approve or disprove the lists, which has delayed actions that EPA otherwise could be taken to address harmful algal blooms in the Western Basin of Lake Erie.

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