Boaters, Beware: Fines for Invasive Species to Doubled

The fine for forgetting to pull your drain plug at a boat landing, allowing a zebra mussel into your boat or leaving weeds hanging on your trailer will double across Minnesota to as much as $500.

The move was set by the Minnesota Legislature last year and Department of Natural Resources officials said Friday they are ready to enforce the change and slap violators with hefty fines.

Large Percentage of Kalamazoo River Reopened

Nearly all of the Kalamazoo River is being reopened for recreational use and the cleanup of a massive Enbridge Inc. oil spill nearly two years ago is in its final stages, federal, state and local officials announced. Thirty-four miles of the river and all of Morrow Lake are reopening. 

Threatened Lake Sturgeon Bearing Eggs Found in NY

The discovery of stocked lake sturgeon bearing eggs in the Oswegatchie River and Oneida Lake's outlet this spring marks a milestone in restoration efforts that began nearly 20 years ago, biologists said Monday.

$10 Million For Great Lakes Phosphorus Reduction

Federal officials are giving out $10 million in grants to reduce phosphorus in the Great Lakes. The element is tied to the production of algae, which can be toxic to wildlife and people.

The funding is part of the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative, launched in 2010 to tackle a diverse set of environmental problems.High levels of phosphorus are often due to farm runoff and poorly treated sewage, according to the initiative’s action plan. The grants are aimed at farmers who are looking for more efficient conservation programs for their land and nearby water sources.

Record lake trout caught in Lake Erie

The state Fish and Boat Commission confirmed that Todd Young of Nazareth, Pa., set a state record for lake trout with a fish weighing 29 pounds, 4 ounces. Caught May 6 in Lake Erie on a Northern King spoon trolled about 3 miles off Harbor Creek, the fish topped the previous record of 27 pounds, 13 ounces caught in Lake Erie in 1996 by Tom Illar Jr. of Apollo.

In other northern climates, lake trout can grow to more than 50 inches and tip the scales at more than 100 pounds.

Coast Guard Proposes Local Regulation on Lake Erie

The Coast Guard proposes to establish a permanent Special Local Regulation on Lake Erie, Lakeside, Ohio. This regulation is intended to regulate vessel movement in portions of Lake Erie during the annual Kelley's Island Swim. This special local regulated area is necessary to protect swimmers from vessel traffic.

Comments and related materials must be received by the Coast Guard on or before July 5, 2012.

Feds Leave Small Harbors Dredging For Cash

By Amy Lane/Bridge Magazine contributor

It’s taking plenty of $100 checks and some larger amounts, fundraisers and perseverance. But with a big slice of their economic future at stake, members of the small waterfront community of Pentwater are banding together to pay for something Washington, D.C., no longer does: Dredging of the sandbar that annually accumulates and chokes off the mouth of a channel between Pentwater Lake and Lake Michigan.

WNY Officials Oppose Lake Ontario Proposal

Citing both erosion and devastating effects to its fishing and tourism business, county legislators from Niagara and Orleans are opposing an International Joint Commission plan to raise water levels in Lake Ontario. A proposal by the commission calls for raising and lowering water levels in the lake by as much as 9-12 inches to restore balance to the lake and maintain wetlands. But county officials say the plan, which would alter water levels for the first time since the 1950s, could be devastating.

EPA Creates Great Lakes Protection Advisory Board

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is creating a board to advise federal agencies carrying out two wide-ranging programs to protect the Great Lakes, EPA chief Lisa Jackson said. Jackson leads a task force with representatives of 16 federal agencies that have roles in the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative and the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement. The new panel will make suggestions.

Establishment of the Great Lakes Advisory Board (GLAB) by Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)


EPA is establishing the Great Lakes Advisory Board (GLAB). The purpose of the GLAB is to provide advice to the Administrator in her capacity as Chair of the Inter-Agency Task Force established per Executive Order 13340 (May 18, 2004),on matters related to Great Lakes restoration and protection. The major objectives will be to provide advice and recommendations on: Great Lakes protection and restoration policy; long term goals and objectives for Great Lakes protection and restoration; and annual priorities to protect and restore the Great Lakes that may be used to help inform budget decisions.