The Obama administration today announced a new Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI) Action Plan that outlines steps that federal agencies will take during the next five years to protect water quality, control invasive species and restore habitat in the largest surface fresh water system in the world.
“We’re currently engaged in the largest conservation initiative in American history, with more farmers taking action to preserve clean land and water than ever before. As part of that historic effort, many farmers in the Great Lakes region are working hard to help improve water quality downstream,” said Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack. “We’re proud to partner with farmers and the many others engaged in voluntary efforts to restore the health of the Great Lakes. Supporting sound conservation practices such as planting cover crops, rotating crops, installing filter strips and restoring wetlands not only helps keep our water clean, it can help create jobs and grow the economy in local communities.”
The GLRI Action Plan announced today will focus on:
· Cleaning up Great Lakes Areas of Concern;
· Preventing and controlling invasive species;
· Reducing nutrient runoff that contributes to harmful and nuisance algal blooms; and
· Restoring habitat to protect native species.
The Great Lakes Interagency Task Force includes EAP, the White House Council on Environmental Quality, the Departments of Agriculture, Commerce, Defense, Health and Human Services, Homeland Security, Housing and Urban Development, Interior, State and Transportation.