Stabenow, Peters Applaud Great Lakes Investment to Combat Invasive Species in Great Lakes

Great Lakes Commission Among Eight MI Awardees Receiving Over $4.2 Million to Combat Invasive Species in Great Lakes

Wednesday, May 04, 2016

U.S. Senators Debbie Stabenow and Gary Peters today applauded an announcement from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) that Michigan will receive $4.2 million in grants from the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative to invest in ongoing efforts to combat invasive species and protect Michigan’s Great Lakes. The Great Lakes Commission will receive $340,000 to enhance software detecting the availability of invasive species in online commerce and coordinate with law enforcement and outreach coordinators to improve the software’s accuracy. This funding comes through the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative, which is administered by the EPA.

“The Great Lakes are part of who we are and our way of life,” said Senator Stabenow, Co-Chair of the Great Lakes Task Force. “This funding will help the Great Lakes Commission control the spread of invasive species. Today’s announcement further underscores the importance of partnerships like the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative, which invests in the health of our Great Lakes and waterways.”

“The Great Lakes are part of our way of life in Michigan, driving economic growth and providing safe drinking water for over 40 million people,” said Senator Peters, a member of the Great Lakes Task Force. “The Great Lakes Restoration Initiative is essential to ensuring the Great Lakes are protected for generations to come. I applaud today’s announcement, which will support efforts by the Great Lakes Commission to prevent the spread of harmful invasive species.”

The Great Lakes Commission brings together leaders from across the Great Lakes basin to coordinate efforts to protect the Great Lakes and help achieve a collective vision of a healthy, strong Great Lakes.

Sens. Stabenow and Peters have been strong advocates for the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative, which is a multi-year plan to restore and preserve the Great Lakes by eliminating toxins, combating invasive species, restoring habitats, and promoting the general health of the Lakes. They are both cosponsors of the Great Lakes Ecological and Economic Protection Act, legislation that would authorize the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative, the Great Lakes Legacy program that deals with contaminated sediments and the Great Lakes National Program Office within the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

In February, Stabenow and Peters introduced the Great Lakes Fishery Research Authorization, bipartisan legislation to provide better federal funding opportunities to update technologies and create new research projects to benefit the Great Lakes, and close the research gap between the Great Lakes Science Center and other fishery research centers around the country.