Habitat restoration in Areas of Concern (AOCs) is a priority for many agencies and organizations across the Great Lakes. These projects contribute substantially to removing Beneficial Use Impairments (BUIs) and delisting AOCs but also in realizing environmental and economic benefits, and enhancing the quality of life for local and regional citizens.
Funding through the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI) and the development of the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative Action Plan has not only expedited restoration of these environmentally degraded areas, it has also increased the number of entities engaged in the restoration of these environmentally degraded areas.
The Great Lakes Commission has been engaged in Regional Partnerships with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) since 2008 to implement key habitat restoration projects in U.S. AOCs. NOAA Regional Partnerships support habitat restoration efforts in AOCs by designing and implementing high priority projects to advance removal of habitat-related BUIs. The partnership is aligned and closely coordinated with ongoing efforts of federal and state agencies to implement critical restoration projects in AOCs.
The Great Lakes Commission offers a centralized, core team that is augmented by local implementation partners and research institutions. The current three-year partnership, from 2013 to 2016, includes both regional coordination and local, on-the-ground habitat restoration.
NOAA and GLC have many overlapping priorities and use combined resources, project management abilities, and a Great Lakes regional focus to help steward AOCs into social, economic and ecological sustainability. Learn more about past and current projects by visiting our 2008-2012 NOAA-GLC Regional Partnership Page or 2013-2016 NOAA-GLC Regional Partnership Page