Author Archives: landrews

Commissions launch new online mapping tool focusing on dams and the invasive sea lamprey

For immediate release: May 1, 2015  |   Download News Release PDF

Application allows internet users to visualize the impact of dams and dam removal on sea lamprey populations in Great Lakes tributaries

Ann Arbor, Mich. –  The Great Lakes Fishery Commission and the Great Lakes Commission today launched a new online mapping application that offers the ability to trace upstream and downstream effects of dams and dam removal on sea lamprey populations in the Great Lakes.  Sea lampreys, which are invasive in the Great Lakes and destroy fish with a voracious appetite, require certain stream types for spawning.  Unfortunately, the Great Lakes basin is abundant with sea lamprey streams.  Dams and barriers, which inhibit fish passage, do serve a sea lamprey control function and, thus, protect millions of Great Lakes from sea lamprey predation.  This online tool helps researchers, policy-makers, and the public visualize Great Lakes barriers and dams and better understand the benefits and drawbacks of dam removal.

The tool is available online at

“Sea lampreys destroyed the Great Lakes fishery after they invaded through shipping canals in the early part of the twentieth century,” said Robert Lambe, the Great Lakes Fishery Commission’s executive secretary.  “The lampreys found nearly unlimited food in the lakes, benefitted from abundant spawning habitat, and flourished because nothing preyed upon them—a perfect recipe for invasion and destruction.”

Lambe added:  “Sea lampreys are controlled effectively through a combination of lampricides, traps, and barriers.  Regarding barriers, tens of thousands exist in the Great Lakes basin, and many protect upstream reaches from sea lamprey invasion and spawning.  As dams age and crumble, and as society pivots in favor of dam removal, the lakes benefit from improved fish passage but are harmed by an expansion of the sea lamprey’s range.  We need to balance dam removal and invasive species spread.”

“The tool our two commissions launch today helps to visualize the impact of the removal or addition of sea lamprey barriers in the Great Lakes basin,” said Tim Eder, executive director of the Great Lakes Commission.  “We are pleased to partner with the Great Lakes Fishery Commission on building this new platform for decisionmaking regarding sea lamprey control investments and broader natural resources management.”

The online mapping tool includes historical sea lamprey control data in addition to basic stream attribute data that allows web users to experiment for themselves on the placement or removal of dams and then to see, instantly, the effect of that management action.  Additional enhancements are planned in 2015 including metrics that are considered in sea lamprey treatment planning, trapping locations and results, and more historical attributes.

Christine Manninen, Great Lakes Commission, 734-971-9135,

Jill Wingfield, Great Lakes Fishery Commission, 734-669-3005

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The Great Lakes Fishery Commission is an international organization established by the United States and Canada through the 1954 Convention on Great Lakes Fisheries. The commission has the responsibility to control sea lampreys and promote measures that protect and improve the multi-billion-dollar Great Lakes fishery.

The Great Lakes Commission, chaired by Kelly Burch, executive director of oil and gas operations for the Pennsylvania Dept. of Environmental Protection, is an interstate compact agency established under state and U.S. federal law and dedicated to promoting a strong economy, healthy environment and high quality of life for the Great Lakes-St. Lawrence region and its residents. The Commission consists of governors’ appointees, state legislators, and agency officials from its eight member states. Associate membership for Ontario and Québec was established through the signing of a “Declaration of Partnership.” The Commission maintains a formal Observer program involving U.S. and Canadian federal agencies, tribal authorities, binational agencies and other regional interests. The Commission offices are located in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Learn more at

Great Lakes Commission welcomes legislation authorizing Great Lakes cleanup funding

For immediate release: April 22, 2015  |   Download News Release PDF

Ann Arbor, Mich. – The Great Lakes Commission welcomes legislation introduced yesterday by Sen. Mark Kirk (R-IL) and co-sponsored by Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH) that formally authorizes funding for a comprehensive restoration program for the Great Lakes. The ...   Read More »

Tim A. Eder

Tim Eder was appointed as the fifth executive director of the Great Lakes Commission on July 10, 2006. With more than 25 years of experience in natural resources policy development and advocacy, Eder is in charge of the Commission’s day-to-day operations and advancing the shared interests of the Commission membership ...   Read More »

Bear Lake restoration work commences in Muskegon Lake Area of Concern

For immediate release: March 26, 2015  |    Download News Release PDF

Muskegon, Mich. – The Great Lakes Commission has received new funding to support ecological restoration efforts in Muskegon Lake by removing sediments that contain harmful levels of phosphorus, restoring natural water flow and creating wetlands in Bear ...   Read More »

IJC blog post: Lake Erie working group prepares plan for states, province

A new international committee of the Great Lakes Commission is digging for solutions to the problem of harmful algal blooms in Lake Erie. The Lake Erie Nutrient Targets (LENT) Working Group includes representatives from the U.S. states of Indiana, Michigan, New York, Ohio, and Pennsylvania and the province of Ontario, ...   Read More »

Great Lakes Commission welcomes legislation advancing immediate measures to defend Great Lakes from Asian carp

For immediate release: February 26, 2015  |   Download News Release PDF

Ann Arbor, Mich. – The Great Lakes Commission supports legislation, introduced today by Rep. Candice Miller (R-Mich.) and Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.), directing federal agencies to take immediate actions to prevent the spread of Asian carp and ...   Read More »

Great Lakes Commission releases annual federal appropriations priorities, highlights need for collaboration

For immediate release: February 25, 2015  |   Download News Release PDF

Washington, D.C. – New strategies for addressing large-scale problems like nutrient pollution were highlighted at the Semiannual Meeting of the Great Lakes Commission, which concluded today in Washington, D.C.

Congressman David Joyce (R-Ohio), in addressing the Commission ...   Read More »

2015 Great Lakes Commission Legislative Priorities

Priorities for Sustaining Great Lakes Restoration and Economic Revitalization

Download PDF  | Published February 2015

The Great Lakes are a vital environmental and economic asset for the eight states and two provinces of the Great Lakes region. With 90 percent of our nation’s supply of fresh surface water, the Great ...   Read More »

2015 Great Lakes Regional Priorities

Priorities for Great Lakes Restoration and Economic Revitalization

Download PDF  |  Published February 2015

This document outlines the near-term priorities for the Great Lakes as identified by an alliance that includes the Great Lakes Commission, the mayors of the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Cities Initiative, the Healing Our ...   Read More »

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