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What's New
Red Cliff band to continue raising munition barrels from Lake Superior
The Daily Press (12/13)
The Red Cliff Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Indians is continuing efforts to raise barrels filled with Army munitions from Lake Superior dumped by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers from 1959 to 1962.

Some property owners speak up on Lake Ontario plan
Democrat & Chronicle (12/8)
In Rochester, N.Y., some shoreline property owners and other local residents endorsed a proposed plan to regulate Lake Ontario water levels in a more environmentally sensitive way.

Plan invests $24.7M in Michigan recreation projects, land
Detroit Free Press (12/8)
In Michigan, 69 projects are getting the green light from the Natural Resources Trust Fund, a fund which gets its money from oil and gas royalties paid to the state.

Lake Michigan duneland preservation hits 'not for sale' roadblock in Saugatuck
MLive (12/3)
Efforts to preserve a large section of pristine Lake Michigan duneland hit a stumbling block after the state withdrew a $500,000 grant request to help buy 150 acres

Prentice finds oil pipes tough sell in Ontario, Quebec
Bloomberg (12/3)
Alberta Premier Jim Prentice is finding oil pipelines a tough sell in Ontario and Quebec.

Friends of Detroit River honor Congressman John Dingell for environmental legacy
The News-Herald (11/20)
During the 58 years John Dingell served in the U.S. House of Representatives, the Democrat who represents Michiganís 12th District has been considered by many to be a friend of those who place a high importance on environmental issues.

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Overview
The environment of the Great Lakes region is blessed with huge forests and wilderness areas, rich agricultural land, hundreds of tributaries and thousands of smaller lakes, and extensive mineral deposits. The region's glacial history and the tremendous influence of the lakes themselves create unique conditions that support a wealth of biological diversity, including more than 130 rare species and ecosystems.

The environment supports a world-class fishery and a variety of wildlife, such as white-tailed deer, beaver, muskrat, weasel, fox, black bear, bobcat, moose and other furbearing animals. Bird populations thrive on the various terrains, some migrating south in the winter, others making permanent homes. An estimated 180 species of fish are native to the Great Lakes, including small- and large-mouth bass, muskellunge, northern pike, lake herring, whitefish, walleye and lake trout. Rare species making their home in the Great Lakes region include the world's last known population of the white catspaw pearly mussel, the copper redhorse fish and the Kirtland's warbler.

The region's sand dunes, coastal marshes, rocky shorelines, lakeplain prairies, savannas, forests, fens, wetlands and other landscapes contain features that are either unique or best represented withink the Great Lakes basin. For example, the world's largest freshwater dunes line the shores of Lake Michigan.

Over the course of history, many types of pollution have inflicted and been reduced in the region, yet significant challenges remain. These range from threats to divert water out of the Great Lakes basin to the introduction of nonindigenous invasive species and airborne toxics into the basin. Protection of water quality and sustainable development remain long-term goals.

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General Resources
Great Lakes Atlas
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
This Environmental Atlas and Resource Book is an excellent resource on the Great Lakes, including physical characteristics, natural processes, people, concerns, joint management and new directions (mirrored on Environment Canada's site).

Great Lakes Radio Consortium
The Great Lakes Radio Consortium produces environmentally focused radio features and news featured on more than 100 public radio stations around the Great Lakes region and several national radio programs.

Illinois Natural Resources Information Network
Illinois Department of Natural Resources (DNR)
Provides natural resource-related information to the citizens of Illinois so that individuals and groups can make informed decisions about natural resource management and policy.

Science & The Environment Bulletin
Environment Canada
This bimonthly publication provides information on leading-edge environmental science and technology. Includes collections on habitat, pollution, species at risk, water and related topics.

Software for Environmental Awareness
United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Region 5 and Purdue University produce free interactive software programs on environmental topics.

Summary of Environmental Law in North America
Commission for Environmental Cooperation (CEC)
The CEC created this summary to improve public access to the environmental law of the three parties to the North American Free Trade Agreement; i.e., Canada, Mexico and the United States.

Visualizing the Great Lakes
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Great Lakes National Program Office (GLNPO)
GLNPO has an extensive collection of images from around the Great Lakes that is available for you to use.

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Updated: December 22, 2014
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