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E-M:/ Public Meeting Provides Report and Recommendations on Great Lakes Aquaculture

Enviro-Mich message from mgaden <mgaden@glfc.org>

Joint News Release from the Great Lakes Fishery Commission and the
International Joint Commission

For Immediate Release
September 21, 1999

Contacts:	Doug Dodge, Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Great
Lakes Fishery Commission's 		Habitat Advisory Board (705)
		Margaret Dochoda, Great Lakes Fishery Commission (734)
		John Hartig, International Joint Commission's Great Lakes
Water Quality Board (313) 568-9594
		Lisa Tulen, International Joint Commission (519) 257-6705

Public Meeting Provides Report and Recommendations
on Great Lakes Aquaculture

The Great Lakes Fishery Commission's Habitat Advisory Board (HAB) and the
International Joint Commission's Water Quality Board (WQB) detailed
recommendations and research needs in a report released today entitled
"Addressing Concerns for Water Quality Impacts of Large-scale Great Lakes
Aquaculture."  The recommendations were the result of a roundtable held on
January 27-28, 1999 in Windsor, Ontario.

More than 50 people attended including representatives from government,
academia, industry, First Nations and environmental nongovernmental
organizations.  A number of case studies were presented followed by breakout
sessions to develop management advice and insight on addressing water
quality concerns from large-scale aquaculture.

"This report underscores the importance of environmental impact analysis
prior to the siting of new or expanded pen culture facilities.  If properly
designed in suitable locations, they can be an asset. But they can also have
significant negative impacts on water quality if proper analysis is not
done.  We hope all agencies in the Great Lakes basin will continue to
address the water quality and habitat issues associated with these
facilities," said Commissioner David Dempsey of the Great Lakes Fishery

Aquaculture is an emerging Great Lakes issue due to the recent increase in
the number of large-scale operations.  Some negative water quality impacts
have been observed in the Great Lakes basin due to increased phosphorous
loadings associated with fish and feed wastes.  However, as roundtable
attendees confirmed, proper siting and management of large-scale aquaculture
operations will minimize water quality impacts.  The majority of aquaculture
operations in the Great Lakes are properly sited and well managed to ensure
a minimal water quality impacts.  Aquaculture currently provides 21% of
worldwide seafood production.

The report is available on the IJC website at
www.ijc.org/boards/wqb/aquaculture and limited printed copies of the report
can be obtained from IJC's Information Services at (519) 257-6734 (e-mail at

The International Joint Commission is a binational Canada-United States
organization established by the Boundary Waters Treaty of 1909 to help the
two governments prevent and resolve disputes over use of waters along the
Canada-U.S. border.  Under the 1978 Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement, the
Commission assesses progress by the two countries to restore and maintain
the chemical, physical and biological integrity of the two waters of the
Great Lakes basin.  Additional information about IJC's Water Quality Board
can be found at http://www.ijc.org/boards/wqb/index.html on the internet.

The Great Lakes Fishery Commission is a binational organization established
in 1955 by treaty between the United States and Canada.  This bilateral
agreement affirms the need for the two nations to collaborate on the
protection and the perpetuation of the Great Lakes' fisheries resources. The
Great Lakes aquaculture industry is relevant to the Commission's vision of
healthy Great Lakes ecosystems and effective institutional and stakeholder
partnerships.  Additional information about the HAB can be found at
http://www.glfc.org/staff/hab.htm.  The aquaculture roundtable and
subsequent report provide an excellent opportunity for both Commissions to
work together on a Great Lakes issue relevant to both agencies.  Both
Commissions look forward to the opportunity to build on this partnership in
the future.


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