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E-M:/ Lawsuit against protecting great Lakes

Shipping Groups Sue Mich. Over New Law

Posted 22 March 2007 @ 03:48 pm EST

A coalition of shipping companies and industry groups from the United States, Canada and Barbados representing ocean freighters that transport cargo on the Great Lakes has sued Michigan, claiming its new ballast-water law is unconstitutional.

The law, which took effect Jan. 1, is among the first of its type in the nation. It is aimed at stopping the further introduction of invasive species into the lakes through the discharge of ocean water used as ballast.

A freighter takes in thousands of gallons of ballast water to stabilize it when traveling with little or no cargo.

Four shipping companies, four shipping associations and one dock company filed a complaint March 15 in U.S. District Court in Detroit. It asks a judge to declare the Michigan Ballast Water Act unconstitutional.