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U.S./Canadian commission examines inconsistent water quality monitoring

By Rachael Gleason
Great Lakes Echo
Oct. 6, 2009
Editors note: This is part of a series relevant to the International Joint commission’s biennial meeting in Windsor on Wednesday and Thursday. More than 20,000 beaches closed last year when water samples tested positive for harmful bacteria. But inconsistent sampling methods have Great Lakes officials questioning those results. The International Joint Commission, a binational organization that advises the U.S. and Canada on Great Lakes issues, examined problems with beach testing methods and advisory systems in a report released last month.

Great Lakes Week 2011

Great Lakes environmental issues are on tap Oct. 11-14 in Detroit.  The stories below cover some of the issues that will be discussed during Great Lakes Week 2011 by four international organizations.  


Oct. 14:

Making blue investments that yield green dividends 
Blue investments in a green economy will be discussed Oct. 11-14 in Detroit at the 2011 Great Lakes Week.

Large lakes worldwide share many of the same threats

By Ray García

Algae pollution, plastic pollution and waste run-off plague the Great Lakes here in the United States. But similar problems also threaten large bodies of freshwater worldwide. The seven African Great Lakes and Lake Baikal in Russia, two of the world’s largest systems of freshwater, also face these problems daily. During the summer, a rapid growth of algae is among the most prominent challenges in Lake Erie and Lake Michigan. These algal blooms harm the lake animals and can harm humans as well.