The Great Lakes have a drain hole that must be plugged

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The Great Lakes have a drain hole that must be plugged

Humans playing around on the edge of the great lakes have managed to create a hole that has dropped the lake level by 60cm since 1970. Thats a serious amount of water.

There's a "drain hole'' in the Great Lakes basin that's hemorrhaging almost 9.5 billion litres of water a day and must be patched up by the Canadian and American governments, environmental groups said Tuesday.

Navigation dredging, riverbed mining and shoreline alteration on the St. Clair River near Port Huron, Mich., and Sarnia, Ont., have affected the flow of the Great Lakes and is draining water into the Atlantic Ocean at a rate that's three times greater than original estimates, said Mary Muter of the Georgian Bay Association.

Muter said water levels in lakes Michigan and Huron and the Georgian Bay have fallen 60 centimetres since 1970.

The loss of water is senseless and will negatively affect water quality in the Great Lakes, as well as boating, fishing and commercial shipping, said John Jackson, program director for Great Lakes United.
... Quote:
We think it's really important that the governments do some serious study to figure out the cause and to figure out what we can do.

The issue is that it seems like it's increasing year by year and that's what we didn't realize before, and that's what we need to better understand.

If that's connected to human causes - as we suspect it is - we need to figure out what we can do to correct those problems that we've created as human beings.
Jackson said.

He said the issue has been known for decades but the new research is valuable in pointing out how the problem appears to be getting worse.

More on the site.
By netchicken: posted on 16-8-2007

The army did it!

This summer's distressingly low water levels on the upper Great Lakes have a lot of people scratching their heads, but a group of Canadian property owners is pointing the finger straight at the Army Corps of Engineers - an agency it says is largely responsible for a 3-foot drop in the long-term average levels on Lakes Michigan and Huron.

Two years ago, the Georgian Bay Association released a study that claimed a 1962 Army Corps dredging project accidentally created an ever-increasing erosion problem on the bottom of the St Clair River, the main outflow for Lakes Michigan and Huron.

The result during the past few decades was the average loss of about 845 million gallons per day from the lakes, according to the study, which warned that the riverbed erosion would only get worse if something was not done to fix it.

Things have since indeed gotten worse, according to the group of homeowners that shelled out $200,000 for the initial study, which was conducted by the coastal engineering firm Baird & Associates.

Recent measurements analyzed by the group claim the amount of water lost due to erosion is now triple the initial estimate, resulting in the loss of an average of 2.5 billion gallons of water each day from Lakes Michigan and Huron, which are actually one body of water separated by the Straits of Mackinac. The theory is the water flows down the St. Clair River, through Lake Erie, over Niagara Falls, and ultimately out to the Atlantic Ocean.

"We're losing water out of the St. Clair River that is equivalent to the amount diverted through Chicago," said John Jackson of the conservation group Great Lakes United. "It's like a whole new diversion out of the Great Lakes."
By netchicken: posted on 16-8-2007

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