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GLIN==> Great Ships Initiative



Great Ships Initiative

Press Release from Northeast-Midwest Institute

 

Date:   July 11, 2006

 

IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 

NOTE TO EDITORS AND INTERESTED PARTIES:  A press event announcing an industry-led "Great Ships Initiative "to address invasive species problems associated with the commercial shipping industry on the Great Lakes,  will take place at 5:00 PM on Wednesday, July 12, 2006, at the Duluth Seaway Port Authority building, 1200 Port Terminal Drive, Duluth, MN.  The event is open to the public.

 

Duluth, MN, and Superior, WI, U.S.A. - Leaders of over a dozen major U.S. and Canadian Great Lakes ports will be joined by scientists and federal agency officials at Duluth/Superior harbor to announce an industry-led "Great Ships Initiative."  This $3.5 million effort will focus on developing and implementing shipboard treatment technology necessary to prevent the introduction of aquatic nuisance species into the Great Lakes by ocean-going ships. 

 

The Northeast-Midwest Institute led a collaborative scoping effort funded by the Great Lakes Protection Fund which produced the basic concept for the Great Ships Initiative.  The scoping report can be downloaded from the Internet at www.nemw.org/scopingreport.pdf   

 

Great Ships Initiative research efforts will be based within the University of Wisconsin-Superior.  The project will be co-managed by the Northeast-Midwest Institute and the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, both of Washington, D.C.

 

An executive committee of maritime industry and Great Lakes resource stakeholders will provide broad oversight to the project.  Several technical advisory committees will offer advice on topics relating to ships' engineering and biological efficacy.

 

Adolph Ojard, Duluth’s port director, noted; "Aquatic nuisance species are unwelcome hitchhikers; they are an unintended consequence of international maritime commerce.   The sooner we develop technology to keep these organisms off ships, the sooner this problem will be solved."

 

The Great Ships Initiative received initial funding of $500,000 through the efforts of Congressman David R. Obey (D-WI) in federal fiscal year 2005.  Congressman Obey secured an equal amount in fiscal year 2006.  Since that time, additional funds or in-kind contributions have been provided by the following project partners:

 

The U.S. Department of Transportation

The U.S. Maritime Administration

The St. Lawrence Seaway Development Corporation

The St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corporation

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

The Great Lakes Maritime Research Institute

The City of Superior

The Duluth Seaway Port Authority

The Port of Milwaukee

The Illinois International Port District

The Ports of Indiana

The Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority

The Cleveland-Cuyahoga County Port Authority

The Erie-Western Pennsylvania Port Authority

The Port of Toronto, Ontario

The Port of Hamilton, Ontario

 

Additionally, the project has received endorsements from Wisconsin Governor James Doyle; the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Cities Initiative; Great Lakes United, a regional conservation organization; and Federal Navigation Limited, the largest operator of ocean shipping on the Great Lakes.

 

CONTACT:

 

Allegra Cangelosi – Senior Policy Analyst

GSI Project Manager

Northeast-Midwest Institute

Phone: 202-464-4007

E-mail: acangelo@nemw.org