The Great Lakes are significantly cleaner today, now that many of the region's factories have closed. But environmental challenges -- including pollution and invasive species -- remain.   

Ways to Connect

Can we sell cattails -- and save wetlands?

Oct 28, 2016

Standing in the middle of Michigan's Shiawassee National Wildlife Refuge, it’s hard to comprehend the size. It’s about two-thirds the size of Manhattan – some 10,000 acres of marshes and bogs, forest and farm land.

Everywhere you look; there’s a hawk or a heron. Bushes rustle with rodents; and the air is filled with mosquitos.

Here, researchers are tackling invasive cattails -- a common problem in wetlands across the Great Lakes.  

Environmental Commissioner of Ontario

Ontario's environmental watchdog has some harsh words about the government's handling of invasive species in the Great Lakes and other areas.

In a sweeping report issued this week, Dianne Saxe, the Environmental Commissioner of Ontario,
says that "with few exceptions, there is little indication that the Ontario government is taking concrete actions to prevent the introduction of invaders, detect them early on in an invasion, or manage and monitor species that are already doing damage."

NYS DEC / Hydrilla

The Great Lakes Commission created a web tool designed to prevent sales of aquatic invasive species over the Internet. Now, the commission is working to get it into the hands of state and federal regulators.

Erosion threatens homes on Lake Michigan

Oct 21, 2016
Susan Bence

Randy Vassh maneuvers an excavator in tandem with his co-worker at a lakefront home in the village of Caledonia, Wisc.