Lake Superior Annual Report Highlights Progress
Posted on: November 1, 2017

A 2017 annual report highlighting efforts aimed at Lake Superior restoration and protection is now accessible at www.binational.net. The document provides information about both accomplishments and challenges, including restoration actions, environmental monitoring and outreach.

2017 Annual Report for Lake Superior

The annual report is based on the Lake Superior Lakewide Action and Management Plan, or “LAMP”, which was released in 2016.

Federal, state and provincial agencies around Lake Superior contribute to Lake Superior restoration and protection efforts through the binational “Lake Superior Partnership.” Environment and Climate Change Canada, the Ontario Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change and the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry contribute to Canadian efforts.

Extensive coastal wetlands are located at Pays Plat east of Nipigon, Ontario. Such Canadian Lake Superior wetlands are both ecologically productive and rare. Protection efforts undertaken in partnership with Pays Plat First Nation are highlighted in the annual report for Lake Superior. (Photo: Debbie King)

The report lists several accomplishments, including the following:

  • an 83% reduction in mercury and an 88% reduction in dioxin emissions and discharges in the Lake Superior watershed compared to 1990 levels
  • in Ontario, Lake Superior wetlands, shorelines, and beaches of the Pays Plat First Nation are being protected and enhanced, and cultural connections to Lake Superior improved. An ecological inventory has also been completed and water samples collected to establish a baseline for long-term monitoring.
  • 646 acres/261 hectares, have been aquired in the area of Wisconsin’s Bark Bay Slough State Natural Area on Superior’s shorline. This includes coastal wetlands and helps to maintain water quality, habitat and recreational access
  • Michigan Department of Natural Resources and the Keweenaw Land Trust are working to preserve nearly 1,300 acres/526 hectares and 3.5 mi./6 km. of Pilgrim River corridor near Houghton for public recreational use. The property will be managed as a working forest through a $550,000 U.S. Forest Service grant
  • In Minnesota, Lake and Cook Counties have integrated Lake Superior Action and Management Plan goals into an ecologically-based watershed management plan.
Bark Bay Slough State Natural Area.
Wisconsin’s Bark Bay Slough State Natural Area.

The 4 page report states that, “Although the Lake Superior ecosystem is in good condition, there are serious threats including: aquatic invasive species, climate change, reduced habitat connectivity between the open lake and tributaries, chemical contaminants, substances of emerging concern, and habitat destruction.”

View the full annual report for Lake Superior on binational.net.Annual reports for all the other Great Lakes are also available:

 

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