“ Great Lakes water diversions:  political hearsay or an  impending reality?” Student: Eric Bacyinski ENST 485 Term Paper ...
What is a water diversion?   <ul><li>Any transfer of water across watershed boundaries through a man-made pipeline or cana...
<ul><li>Water, Water… not   everywhere … </li></ul><ul><li>Covers 70% of Earth’s surface </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Only 3% of ...
Unique Nature <ul><li>2 Nations: 8 States & 2 Provinces  </li></ul><ul><li>+ 33 million people </li></ul><ul><li>=   A com...
Significance <ul><li>Cultural </li></ul><ul><li>-State mottos </li></ul><ul><li>-Sports </li></ul><ul><li>-Recreation </li...
A billboard in SE Michigan (2001) sponsored by the organization, “Citizens for Michigan’s Future’
History Lesson: Chicago’s Dirty Water <ul><li>Late 1800’s: Downtown slaughterhouses, factories </li></ul><ul><li>Poor sani...
<ul><li>Boundary Waters Treaty of 1909 </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Canadian and U.S. governments  </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Pri...
… continued… <ul><li>1930: Wisconsin wins ct. case against excessive Chicago diversion </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Supreme Ct. m...
Current Chi-town issues <ul><li>Grand-fathered into every GL agreement </li></ul><ul><li>Adding 1 new community every two ...
Long Lac and Ogoki diversions   <ul><li>Unknown yet brings billions of gallons  into  GL </li></ul><ul><li>Completed in ’4...
The not so Pleasant Prairie <ul><li>Small Wisconsin community discovered local groundwater was contaminated w/ Radium </li...
Little ol’ Lowell <ul><li>Lowell, IN; 1987: EPA orders drinking water unsafe </li></ul><ul><li>New source chosen: L. Michi...
The Nova Group <ul><li>1997: Canadian entrepreneur proposes to export/sell GL H 2 0 to Asia </li></ul><ul><li>Permitted & ...
The Compact <ul><li>International agreement/interstate compact - prohibits most new diversions & exports of water out of G...
Census scare <ul><li>GL states are losing people; especially MI </li></ul><ul><li>+  Brain-drain w/ following  ↓ in  polit...
Political Chemistry of H 2 0 <ul><li>“ We’re not going to buy it. We’re going to be stealing it. You’re going to have to p...
Economic Nature <ul><li>Hydroelectric power for Canada (mostly) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>58% of Canadian electricity from Hyd...
Acts, compacts, laws and bills <ul><li>Great Lakes Water  </li></ul><ul><li>Quality Agreement </li></ul><ul><li>crafted in...
2008 American Presidential Candidates <ul><li>Stated that when he is President, “the Great Lakes Collaboration will receiv...
Conclusion <ul><li>Remember despite hoopla: “when all of these diversions both in and out of the Great Lakes are summed, t...
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Great Lakes Diversion History

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This powerpoint was produced for my cap-stone class in the Environmental Studies program at the University of Michigan - Dearborn

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Great Lakes Diversion History

  1. 1. “ Great Lakes water diversions: political hearsay or an impending reality?” Student: Eric Bacyinski ENST 485 Term Paper ID #: 3408-5792 [email_address]
  2. 2. What is a water diversion? <ul><li>Any transfer of water across watershed boundaries through a man-made pipeline or canal </li></ul><ul><li>2,121 million gallons of water are being diverted out of the Great Lakes every day </li></ul><ul><li>Happen for variety of reasons: social, political and economical </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Most in GL due to growing large metropolises </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Supply range of uses from municipal supplies to irrigation and industry </li></ul><ul><li>-Provide for bottled water (groundwater) </li></ul>Pros -alter natural flow, water quality, lake levels and general ecology of the Great Lakes -secondary impacts in wetlands, nearshore ecosystems, tourism, property values Cons
  3. 3. <ul><li>Water, Water… not everywhere … </li></ul><ul><li>Covers 70% of Earth’s surface </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Only 3% of that is fresh </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>20% of that lies in the GL </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Today 1 in 6 people worldwide do not have access to fresh-water </li></ul><ul><li>40% of world’s population subject to serious water shortages </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Within 25 years, half the world’s population could have trouble finding freshwater for drinking & irrigation </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Michigan could be the future Saudi Arabia </li></ul>
  4. 4. Unique Nature <ul><li>2 Nations: 8 States & 2 Provinces </li></ul><ul><li>+ 33 million people </li></ul><ul><li>= A complicated history & complex legal parameters </li></ul>
  5. 5. Significance <ul><li>Cultural </li></ul><ul><li>-State mottos </li></ul><ul><li>-Sports </li></ul><ul><li>-Recreation </li></ul><ul><li>Environmental </li></ul><ul><li>-Sub-continental divide </li></ul><ul><li>-1% of water is renewed annually </li></ul><ul><li>-Habitat for specialized species </li></ul>Economic -Brookings Institute report; direct economic benefit of restoring the Great Lakes – $50 billion -38% of the nation’s bachelor’s degrees and 37% of its advanced science and engineering graduates A statewide poll of Michiganders found that 70% of residents supported the creation of a binding no-diversions pact
  6. 6. A billboard in SE Michigan (2001) sponsored by the organization, “Citizens for Michigan’s Future’
  7. 7. History Lesson: Chicago’s Dirty Water <ul><li>Late 1800’s: Downtown slaughterhouses, factories </li></ul><ul><li>Poor sanitation system + stagnant water = PROBLEMS </li></ul><ul><li>1885: 90,000 die from Cholera from drinking water </li></ul><ul><ul><li>1/10 th of Chicago’s population at the time </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>formation of the Drainage and Water Supply Commission and the Sanitary District of Chicago </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Reversal began in 1892; took 8,500 workers to construct </li></ul><ul><li>Courts consistently sided w/ Chicago on legal challenges </li></ul><ul><li>… to be continued… </li></ul>
  8. 8. <ul><li>Boundary Waters Treaty of 1909 </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Canadian and U.S. governments </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Prior to, fear ran rampant that anyone could tap waters without consequences </li></ul></ul><ul><li>International Joint Commission (IJC) </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Created to facilitate management of waters; advisory body </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Role has expanded to include Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement, border air quality; uses an ecological approach </li></ul></ul></ul>
  9. 9. … continued… <ul><li>1930: Wisconsin wins ct. case against excessive Chicago diversion </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Supreme Ct. mandates Chicago wean itself off excessive quantities; from 8,500 cfs 1,500 cfs by ’39 </li></ul></ul><ul><li>’40 & ’56: Dry-times </li></ul><ul><ul><li>’56: 1 st time Chicago diversion was increased solely for needs of people outside the GL Basin </li></ul></ul><ul><li>‘80’s & ’90’s: Controversy rages </li></ul><ul><ul><li>’96: Memorandum of Understanding </li></ul></ul><ul><li>’03: Daley cuts off the flat-rate for H 2 0 </li></ul>
  10. 10. Current Chi-town issues <ul><li>Grand-fathered into every GL agreement </li></ul><ul><li>Adding 1 new community every two years </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Most are well beyond GL Basin boundary </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Rising population and increased contention </li></ul>
  11. 11. Long Lac and Ogoki diversions <ul><li>Unknown yet brings billions of gallons into GL </li></ul><ul><li>Completed in ’43, 20% larger than Chicago d. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Economic opportunity locals in late 1930’s & to boost Canada’s hydro. capabilities during WWII </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Offsets all other diversions in GL Basin </li></ul>
  12. 12. The not so Pleasant Prairie <ul><li>Small Wisconsin community discovered local groundwater was contaminated w/ Radium </li></ul><ul><ul><li>4X the federal level; EPA mandated alt. source </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Community decided: L. Michigan water </li></ul><ul><li>Proposed diversion was 3.2 mgd and did not trigger GL Charter </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Yet, Water Resources Development Act of ‘86 applied </li></ul></ul><ul><li>½ of the community lies outside GL Basin </li></ul><ul><li>GL States eventually signed off on their proposal </li></ul><ul><li>Lessons learned… </li></ul>
  13. 13. Little ol’ Lowell <ul><li>Lowell, IN; 1987: EPA orders drinking water unsafe </li></ul><ul><li>New source chosen: L. Michigan 30 mi. to N </li></ul><ul><li>Town in 5 mi. S. of GL Basin boundary </li></ul><ul><li>Asking for <5 million gallons/day; No Charter but WRDA </li></ul><ul><li>Michigan objected & Engler vetoed proposal </li></ul><ul><li>Situation becomes symbolic ? Of ‘how far is too far?’ </li></ul>
  14. 14. The Nova Group <ul><li>1997: Canadian entrepreneur proposes to export/sell GL H 2 0 to Asia </li></ul><ul><li>Permitted & approved by Ontario govt.; 158 million gallons/year </li></ul><ul><li>Controversy/Public outcry </li></ul><ul><li>WRDA & Charter not applicable </li></ul><ul><li>Identified gaps in system </li></ul><ul><li>Dropped proposal & leaders realize need for better system/solution </li></ul><ul><li>Beginnings of GL Compact </li></ul>
  15. 15. The Compact <ul><li>International agreement/interstate compact - prohibits most new diversions & exports of water out of GL Basin </li></ul><ul><li>Boundary straddling communities can request </li></ul><ul><li>All state legislatures/Governors then U.S. Congress must ratify </li></ul><ul><li>As of 4/3/08: MN, IL, NY and IN are only adopters; passed one chamber in OH, PA, WI. Still not through one chamber in MI. </li></ul>the water diverted must be used solely for public supply and returned as treated wastewater to the Great Lakes watershed 2 have no reasonable alternative, including conservation AND 1 Straddling communities must…
  16. 16. Census scare <ul><li>GL states are losing people; especially MI </li></ul><ul><li>+ Brain-drain w/ following ↓ in political clout </li></ul><ul><li>+ Shrinking congressional delegation </li></ul><ul><li>+ SE & SW gaining pop. & congressional rep. </li></ul><ul><li>___________________________________________________________________ </li></ul><ul><li>= GL increasing eyed as national fresh-H 2 0 resource </li></ul>2000 Census Results 2010 Census Predictions for Congressional seats
  17. 17. Political Chemistry of H 2 0 <ul><li>“ We’re not going to buy it. We’re going to be stealing it. You’re going to have to protect your Great Lakes.” </li></ul><ul><li>- U.S. Representative Dick Armey (R-Texas), 2000. </li></ul><ul><li>Water as a fundamental resource has a long political history </li></ul><ul><li>Example: The Toledo War between Michigan and Ohio, 1835 </li></ul><ul><li>Any resource that is crucial to lifestyle will be politically intertwined; see Petroleum </li></ul><ul><li>Gov. Bill Richardson, Congressman John Linder (R-Georgia) </li></ul>
  18. 18. Economic Nature <ul><li>Hydroelectric power for Canada (mostly) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>58% of Canadian electricity from Hydro </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Much from dams, etc. in GL Basin or St. Lawrence Seaway….same place as Canadian population </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Alberta Tar Sands </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Need water for extraction…tapping of GL? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>To what extent will North Americans go to have cheap, easily accessible oil? </li></ul></ul>“… we must remember that water is not like oil, in that ecosystems do not depend on oil for their survival, we must manage it in a completely different context,” Peter Annin . “ Water is a commodity; it’s a lot like oil. We use oil to heat Boston, but that oil doesn’t come from Boston…”, Hal Rothman.
  19. 19. Acts, compacts, laws and bills <ul><li>Great Lakes Water </li></ul><ul><li>Quality Agreement </li></ul><ul><li>crafted in 1972 and established ‘common U.S. and Canadian goals for the Great Lakes resources’ </li></ul><ul><li>only standing agreement of its kind between the U.S. and Canada </li></ul><ul><li>Not really any anti-diversion measures </li></ul><ul><li>Water Resources Development </li></ul><ul><li>Act of 1986 </li></ul><ul><li>requires all Great Lakes Governors to approve any exports or diversions of Great Lakes water out of the Basin </li></ul><ul><li>Legally-binding </li></ul><ul><li>prevents federal agencies, except the IJC, from studying possible diversions </li></ul><ul><li>Drawback: No CA involvement </li></ul><ul><li>Amended in 2000 </li></ul>
  20. 20. 2008 American Presidential Candidates <ul><li>Stated that when he is President, “the Great Lakes Collaboration will receive real support, real financial resources and real leadership from the federal government “ </li></ul><ul><li>Signed ‘Great Lakes Protection Pledge’ </li></ul><ul><li>Member of U.S. Senate’s Great Lakes Task Force </li></ul><ul><li>Signed ‘Great Lakes Protection Pledge’ </li></ul><ul><li>Member of U.S. Senate’s Great Lakes Task Force </li></ul><ul><li>Has committed that he would not ‘enter into an agreement that would move water out of the Great Lakes to other states’ </li></ul><ul><li>Signed ‘Great Lakes Protection Pledge’ </li></ul>
  21. 21. Conclusion <ul><li>Remember despite hoopla: “when all of these diversions both in and out of the Great Lakes are summed, there is a positive net gain of water coming into the Great Lakes” </li></ul><ul><li>Future of GL is promising and highly dependant upon GL Compact being ratified by Congress </li></ul><ul><li>Most important anti-diversion measure: Public Outcry </li></ul>Thank You

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