Weekly News Roundup: Harmful Algal Blooms, DDT, Water Levels, and More

In case you missed this past week in Great Lakes conservation news:

According to ABC Cleveland, the Ohio Lake Erie Commission will be receiving help from the EPA in researching the causes and controls of harmful algal blooms (HAB) this summer. Meanwhile, a HAB bill coauthored by Senator Rob Portman (R-OH) has passed the Senate and is awaiting President Obama’s signature, reports the Columbus Dispatch. The bill will focus federal monitoring and mitigation efforts on freshwater HABs, which have become a severe issue for Lake Erie in the last several years.

Fish caught in Michigan’s Pine River for a local fishing derby have DDT levels 98% lower than they were 15 years ago, according to Great Lakes Echo. This drop in DDT levels is attributed a river sediment cleanup conducted between 2000 and 2006. The Michigan Department of Health warns that the fish are still too contaminated to eat, however.

Second Wave reports on the future of sustainable fishing in Michigan’s Upper Penninsula. The story examines the fishermen and their families, and investigates the ecological threats facing the fish they depend on, particularly the invasive quagga mussel.

The International Joint Commission released a report advising Lake Ontario’s water levels be allowed to fluctuate naturally, reports the Globe and Mail. The lake’s water levels have been controlled for years, but this is very hazardous to the surrounding wetland and floodplain habitats; however, this would potentially necessitate the development of storm surge protections for surrounding homes.

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