Photo by Missie

Low water levels here to stay?

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Earlier this year, the International Upper Great Lakes Study released its final report to the International Joint Commission, titled Lake Superior Regulation: Addressing Uncertainty in Upper Great Lakes Water Levels. The report is getting some bad press, owing to its recommendations that governments not take any extreme measures to regulate water levels and ameliorate low water levels on Lake Superior, Lake Huron, and Georgian Bay. Here’s one of its key findings:

Restoration structures designed to raise Lake Michigan-Huron water levels would result in adverse effects on certain key interests served by the upper Great Lakes system.

As for any multi-lake regulation, the report has this to say:

Further study of multi-lake regulation in the Great Lakes-St. Lawrence system should not be pursued at this time.

What the study board does recommend is “Adaptive Management,” which translates to “Get used to it.” So don’t expect anything to happen anytime soon to your water levels if you cottage in an affected area. The IUGLS held some public meetings earlier this month and is still accepting written submissions if you’d like to comment on the final report.