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Prioritizing the Great Lakes Restoration

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Prioritizing the Great Lakes Restoration

Prioritizing the Great Lakes Restoration

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  • 1. Prioritizing Great Lakes  Restoration David Allan The University of Michigan y g www.epa.gov/glnpo/image/ www.glfc.org/multimedia/photos.php#
  • 2. Road Map Road Map• Threats to the Lakes: an overview Threats to the Lakes:  an overview• Assessing the relative magnitude and  i h l i i d d spatial distribution of multiple stressors – Project GLEAM P j GLEAM• Prioritizing Great Lakes restoration and  conservation opportunities pp
  • 3. Threats to the Lakes: An Overview Threats to the Lakes: An Overview• Diverse – Nonpoint runoff, toxics, invasives, development• Changing in importance over time Changing in importance over time – May be diminishing, stable, or increasing• Differ by location – E.g., upper vs. lower lakes• Multiple stressors are at work, and their  relative strength varies from place to place g p p
  • 4. Environmental Stressors Environmental Stressors• An environmental stressor is a variable which, owing to  e o e a s esso s a a ab e c ,o g o human activity, exceeds its range of normal variation,  affecting species, biological communities, or ecosystems• The source of the stressor is the human activity causing  the stress• Ecological indicators (biodiversity, ecosystem function)  help establish a stressor  response relationship
  • 5. Categories of Stressors Categories of Stressors• Runoff from the land Runoff from the land• Toxic chemicals• Fishing pressure i hi• Invasive species• Coastal development/Habitat loss• Water withdrawal Water withdrawal• Climate change
  • 6. Multiple Stressors Multiple Stressors• We’ve just seen seven broad categories of We ve just seen seven broad categories of  stressors – Each includes many specific stressors Each includes many specific stressors – Some are likely to be more important than others – Few (any?) will be equal everywhere Few (any?) will be equal everywhere• How do we assess the cumulative influence  of multiple stressors across the Laurentian  of multiple stressors across the Laurentian Great Lakes?
  • 7. Project GLEAM:  Mapping Individual Stressors Across the  Great Lakes  Great Lakes A AN, J. ., SMITH, S. .P., MCINTYR , P. ., HA P RN, ALLAN, J.D., SMITH, S.D.P., MCINTYRE, P.B., HALPERN,  B., BOYER, G., BUCHSBAUM, A., BURTON, A.,  CAMPBELL, L., CHADDERTON, L., CIBOROWSKI, J.,  DORAN, P., EDER, T., INFANTE, D., JOHNSON, L.,  LODGE, D., READ, J., RUTHERFORD, E., SOWA, S.,  LODGE D READ J RUTHERFORD E SOWA S STEINMAN, A., JOSEPH, C. And MARINO, A. 
  • 8. GLEAM Overview GLEAM OverviewGreat Lakes Environmental Assessment & Mapping Great Lakes Environmental Assessment & Mapping project• Map the intensity of multiple stressors across the Map the intensity of multiple stressors across the  Great Lakes (1‐km2 resolution)• Develop weightings of relative impact of each  stressor by habitat type, based on expert judgment• Derive a cumulative stress map summing all  individual stressors
  • 9. Choice of Stressors Choice of StressorsKey stressor characteristics:• Mappable at 1 km2 resolution• Coverage for all 5 lakes Co e age o a 5 a es• Distinct pathway of impact from other stressors
  • 10. Stressor ProgressCATEGORY STRESSOR CATEGORY STRESSOR Hypoxia (low oxygen) Hypoxia (low oxygen) Invasive zebra and quagga mussels Invasive zebra and quagga mussels Light pollution Ballast water invasion risk Channel dredging Invasive sea lamprey Shipping Lanes Emerging fish diseases (VHS, etc.) Invasive and  Aquatic  q p Industrial ports and harbors p ( g , ) Invasive wetland plants (Phragmites, etc.) Nuisance Habitat  Tributary dams (altered flow/sediment retention Invasive nearshore plants (Eurasian milfoil, etc.) Species Alterations Tributary dams (barriers to fish passage) Harmful algal blooms (Microcystis, etc.) Shoreline hardening Nuisance benthic algal blooms (Cladophora, etc.) Shoreline extensions (docks, piers, etc.) Invasive plankton (Hemimysis, etc.) Submerged cables and pipelines Invasive fish (round goby, etc.) Marinas and recreational boating Nitrogen loading Warming water temperatures Nonpoint  Phosphorus loading Climate  Decreasing ice cover Source Sediment loading (tributary) g Change Changing water levels Ch i t l l Pollution P ll ti Combined sewer overflows (CSOs) C bi d fl (CSO ) Coastal road density Pharmaceutical loading Coastal development (residential, commercial) Areas of Concern (AOCs) Coastal  Coastal mining Toxic metals – biomagnifying (mercury, etc.) Development Coastal power plants Coastal power plants Toxic Toxic pesticides (Atrazine, etc.) Toxic pesticides (Atrazine etc ) Coastal recreational use (swimming, etc.) Chemical  Toxic metals – non‐biomagnifying (copper, etc.) Aquaculture Pollution Toxic organics – biomagnifying (PCBs, etc.) Commercial fishing Toxic organics – non‐biomagnifying (PAHs, etc.) Recreational fishing (charter) Emerging toxic chemicals (PBDEs, etc.) Fisheries  Fisheries Recreational fishing (non‐charter) Water  Water withdrawals  (inland and groundwater)Management Native fish stocking Withdrawals Water withdrawals (Great Lakes) Non‐native fish stocking Not completed/not  Completed In progress Diporeia decline feasible
  • 11. Survey: Relative impact of stressorsWe surveyed experts to weight individual stressors.   We want weightings that are:‐ Stressor specific ‐ e.g., mercury is twice as harmful as nitrogen‐ Habitat specific ‐ e.g., mercury in wetlands is twice as harmful as mercury in  open water open water‐ Quantitative ‐ “Ecosystem impact” is quantified for 5 criteria: temporal  frequency, spatial extent, ecological scope, magnitude of  change, recovery time ‐ Survey uses scenario comparisons to elicit how to combine  y p these criteria for overall impact 11
  • 12. Cumulative Stress‐ For each stressor, cumulative stress (CS) merges ‐ Intensity value for each pixel from stressor map (Si) ‐ Relative weight of each stressor from expert survey (Wi) Relative weight of each stressor from expert survey‐ Intensity and weight are normalized to 0‐1 range‐ Sum across all stressors CS = Sum (Si ∙ Wi)
  • 13. GLRI Priority: Working with partners on outreach Prioritizing Restoration and  Conservation Opportunities Some closing thoughts
  • 14. Unique Challenges Unique Challenges• Scale – The Great Lakes are large relative to most other  restoration targets restoration targets• Complexity – The Great Lakes face a wider range of threats  relative to most other restoration targets relative to most other restoration targets
  • 15. Image courtesyMichigan Sea Grant
  • 16. The Value of Data The Value of DataOf the most important threats:Of the most important threats: – Which are most important? And where? – How does the ranking of threats vary from  g y nearshore to offshore, from the upper lakes to the  lower lakes? – What is the cumulative influence of multiple  h h l fl f l l threats?• Where are our restoration priorities? Where are our restoration priorities?• Where are our conservation priorities
  • 17. Guiding Principles Guiding Principles• Clarity of goals Clarity of goals – What do we want to achieve? What is feasible to  achieve?  Who are  we ? achieve? Who are “we”?• Best practices are identified, agreed upon and  followed• Success is evaluated using metrics of  ecological condition l i l diti• The ecosystem is self‐sustaining
  • 18. A Restoration Strategy A Restoration Strategy• Follow the Precautionary Principle – don’t allow Follow the Precautionary Principle  don t allow  restoration to become crisis management• Prioritize risk identify the greatest threats Prioritize risk – identify the greatest threats• Place matters – recognize that the types and level of  threat varies with location h i i hl i• Networking is critical – rapid progress depends on  sharing of data, methods and ideas 
  • 19. With the help of many!• Core Working Group• Key team members b – S. Smith, P. McIntyre, C. Joseph, A. Marino, A. Prusevich – Students: R. Biel, J. Olson, K. Hanson Students: R. Biel, J. Olson, K. Hanson• Data providers – Dozens of staff from GLERL, USGS, Environment Canada, OMNR,  USFWS, TNC, GLFC, MDNRE, IFR, GLEI, NFHAP – Academic scientists from USA & Canada Suggestions or Data to Share? Suggestions or Data to Share? sdpsmith AT umich.edu dallan AT umich.edu http://www.greatlakesmapping.org 19