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Great Lakes

Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI)

The Great Lakes Restoration Initiative is the largest investment in the Great Lakes in two decades.

The Great Lakes Lake Huron Lake Superior Lake Ontario Lake Michigan Lake Erie

Huron | Ontario | Michigan | Erie | Superior

Great Lakes News mailing list

Sign up for the GreatLakesNews email list and get updates on projects and funding.

The Great Lakes form the largest surface freshwater system on the Earth. More than 30 million people live in the Great Lakes basin, and the impact of their daily activities, from the water consumed to the waste returned, directly affects the Great Lakes environment.

In May 2004, a Presidential Executive Order 13340 (PDF) (3 pp, 43 K About PDF) was signed recognizing the Great Lakes as a national treasure, calling for creation of a "Regional Collaboration of National Significance," and a cabinet-level federal Great Lakes Interagency Task Force.

The U.S.-Canadian Great Lakes Binational Toxics Strategy issues annual reports. To date, 12 of the 17 goals for source- and emissions-reductions set in 1997 have been met, and the rest are well advanced.

The Great Lakes Legacy Act provides funding to take the necessary steps to clean up contaminated sediment in "Areas of Concern" (AOCs) located wholly or partially in the United States. Forty-three AOCs have been identified: 26 located entirely within the United States; 12 located wholly within Canada; and five that are shared by both countries.

The United States and Canada together assess the ecological health of the Great Lakes ecosystem and follow the trends of Great Lakes ecosystem conditions. See State of the Lakes Ecosystem


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