Province investing $7.47 million in Great Lakes projects

by Editorial Staff | September 4, 2020
Fish wasting in Great Lakes' depths due in part to algae blooms
The Lake Erie algal bloom as seen on Aug. 19, 2019. (Photo courtesy NOAA CoastWatch Great Lakes Node/Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory/NASA)

The province will invest $7.47 million in projects aimed at improving the health of the Great Lakes.

The funding will support efforts that address environmental challenges such as pollution levels, excess nutrients, and invasive species, Environment, Conservation, and Parks Minister Jeff Yurek announced in Burlington on Friday, Sept. 4.

“The Great Lakes are an important part of our province’s economic prosperity and the well-being of our communities,” he stated. “Our government is committed to working with our partners and investing in on-the-ground projects that will help protect and restore our water resources and improve the health of the Great Lakes so they are safe and beautiful for everyone to enjoy.”

Funds going to groups

Approximately $5.8 million is being provided to 65 Great Lakes projects run by communities, organizations, universities, and Indigenous peoples.

They include:

  • Finalizing a plan to remove the breakwater barrier at Chippewa Park in Thunder Bay to improve the natural water circulation, manage pollutants, and repurpose the breakwater material to create fish habitat
  • The implementation of contaminant reduction practices in key watersheds, such as Garvey-Glenn, Lambton Shores and Main Bayfield, to improve nearshore water quality
  • Monitoring water quality to see if low-impact development and agricultural best practices used by greenhouses in the Leamington-Kingsville area are reducing excess nutrients from entering Lake Erie
  • A pilot project in Toronto that will cut the time it takes to test water quality at two Toronto beaches from 24 hours to four hours, providing quicker results to protect public health

The province is also investing $1.67 million in the Great Lakes Local Action Fund for local projects led by community-based groups, small businesses, municipalities, conservation authorities, and indigenous communities to protect and restore coastal, shoreline and nearshore areas of the Great Lakes and the rivers and streams that flow into them, officials stated.

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