Month: October 2015

Explore Lake Superior Country with the “Group of Seven”

Pic Island
“Pic Island” by Lawren Harris of the Group of Seven artists, 1923. Pic Island is located on Lake Superior near Marathon, Ontario.

Click the photo above to view a full length TV Ontario film (1 hr, 11′) entitled, “Painted Land: In Search of the Group of Seven.” The film blends the art of Canada’s “Group of Seven” painters with present day visits to locations like the Algoma area near Sault Ste. Marie, Pic Island near Marathon and the Slate Islands near Terrace Bay. The last 20′ or so of the film deal with the more western locations, like the Slate Islands and Port Coldwell. The Group of Seven visited this area almost 100 years ago to paint and enjoy the area for the same reasons we live, visit, enjoy and protect this area today. Enjoy this amazing film.

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November 4th/5th: State of Lake Huron Meeting

The Great Lakes Maritime Heritage Center in Alpena, Michigan for ourState of Lake Huron Meeting.  This two day meeting will bring together scientists, resource managers, and interested members of the public from the United States and Canada to discuss the current science and status of Lake Huron, including the St. Marys River. 

Attendees can expect to learn about a wide range of Lake Huron issues including aquatic ecosystem changes, nutrient and food web dynamics, fish and wildlife contaminants, aquatic habitats, and more.  The meeting will also provide an opportunity for participants to engage in discussions that will help to define the binational science and monitoring priorities for Lake Huron’s 2017 year of cooperative study.

An official meeting invitation, including registration and lodging information, will be coming soon.  In the meantime, please save November 4th& 5th, 2015 for the Lake Huron Partnership’s State of Lake Huron Meeting and stay tuned for additional meeting information.

We look forward to seeing you this fall.

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Preliminary Results of Research on Cloud Lake

In recent years a number of individuals have noted a decline in the ecosystem health of Cloud Lake near Thunder Bay. This past summer researchers from Lakehead University, as well as other interested partners, conducted field research and collected baseline data on the lake in an attempt to better understand the environmental factors that may affect the watershed.

More information on this project is can be found at www.infosuperior.com/cloud-lake/ where links to all the data will be posted, as it becomes available.

On October 24, 2015 from 10am to noon, Lakehead University will be hosting a meeting at Blake Community Hall (71 Blake Hall Rd.)(map) to discuss preliminary results of the research with local residents.

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Marathon Mill Demolition Nears Completion

Marathon mill
The mill at Marathon, Ontario prior to 2015 demolition.

Demolition of the former pulp mill at Marathon, Ontario is proceeding and expected to be complete by December, 2015. The mill is located on the shore of Lake Superior at Peninsula Harbour, the main harbour in the town of Marathon. The mill was closed 6 years ago and current owner Tembec Inc. has been ordered to clean up the mill site and ensure all envirornmental issues are addressed. A harbour remediation project for sediment contaminated with mercury was completed in 2012.

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Ontario’s Great Lakes Protection Act Passed

 

Great Lakes

The Great Lakes Protection Act, put forward by the Ontario provincial government, has passed in provincial parliament, adding an enhanced level of protection to the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence River. The basic purpose of the act is to ensure waters are clean, swimmable and fishable and the act also incorporates new initiatives such as:

  • a Great Lakes Guardian Council
  • establishment of environmental monitoring and reporting programs
  • incorporation of traditional knowledge offered by First Nation and Métis communities.

Read the Ontario Government news release.

Access the full text of Bill 66, the Great Lakes Protection Act.

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Sudbury’s Clearwater Lake recovers naturally from mining pollution

Smallmouth Bass from Clearwater Lake
Hillary Quinn-Austin, a student from Queen’s University, shows off some small mouth bass caught in Clearwater Lake. The lake was considered dead due to a history of acid and metals released during nickel smelting operations in Sudbury (Photo: Megan Thomas/CBC).

A lake in Sudbury that was intentionally left untouched after damage from mining emissions has managed to make a recovery.

Scientists have been monitoring Clearwater Lake since the 1970s when acid and metals released by nickel smelting operations in Sudbury left the water body all but void of life.

The lake was left to recover on its own so it could serve as a barometer of the environmental health of Sudbury, said John Gunn, the director of the Living with Lakes Centre at Laurentian University.

“It was set aside in Sudbury’s official plan as a way to monitor the health of the city,” he said.

About a decade ago, small fish started showing up in Clearwater Lake, and last week students on a field course at Laurentian University discovered a healthy small mouth bass population in the water.

The presence of multiple fish species means the lake can now be considered recovered, something Gunn attributes to improvements in Sudbury’s air quality.

The complete CBC News story is available here.

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