Minister announces funding for Great Lakes protection

Earlier this week, the Minister of Environment and Climate Change, Catherine McKenna announced that the Government of Canada will be investing $44.84 million for the Great Lakes Protection Initiative. This funding is part of the $70.5 million of new funding that was earmarked in Budget 2017 for freshwater protection.

The funding from this weeks’ announcement will be used to target six key areas:

  • reducing toxic and nuisance algae ($26M);
  • enhancing the resilience of Great Lakes coastal wetlands ($7.07M);
  • identifying at risk nearshore waters ($5.39M);
  • reducing releases of harmful chemicals ($1.76M);
  • engaging Indigenous peoples in addressing freshwater issues ($2.62M);
  • increasing public engagement through citizen science ($1.99M).

Previously announced in Budget 2017, the Government of Canada has also allocated $43.8 million over 5 years to combat aquatic invasive species in the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence River basin, and Lake Winnipeg. This will be used to reduce threats posed by species such as the Asian carp and the sea lamprey.

“This is wonderful news for the entire Great Lakes-St.Lawrence Seaway system. The Great Lakes are an economic and environmental powerhouse, and it is encouraging to be a part of a government which recognizes the potential of this vast resource,” said Vance Badawey, Member of Parliament, Niagara Centre. “Thanks to dedicated cross-border environmental agencies, progress has been made in improving the health of the Great Lakes ecosystem, however much remains to be done. This funding is a first-step in restoring the Great Lakes so that all stakeholders – economic, environment, and recreational – may utilize this resource in successful cooperation with one another.”

Source – Office of Vance Badawey, Member of Parliament, Niagara Centre press release



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