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Stewardship Station


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Stewardship Station

  1. 1. INLAND SEAS EDUCATION ASSOCIATION “ Protecting the Great Lakes through Education” STEWARDSHIP STATION
  2. 2. Stewardship Station Learning Objectives <ul><li>Students will be able to: </li></ul><ul><li>Define stewardship as the responsibility to protect & preserve the Great Lakes for future generations. </li></ul><ul><li>List several ways they can become stewards of the Great Lakes. </li></ul><ul><li>Define a watershed as the land water flows across or under that drains into a common body of water. </li></ul><ul><li>Explain the feeding relationships between organisms in the aquatic food web of Lake Michigan in terms of producers, consumers, & decomposers. </li></ul><ul><li>Discuss the impacts water waste and pollution (excessive nutrients, exotic species) have on the aquatic food web. </li></ul>
  3. 3. Teaching the Station <ul><li>3 main concepts: </li></ul><ul><li>Stewardship </li></ul><ul><li>Watersheds </li></ul><ul><li>Food Web </li></ul>
  4. 4. Stewardship <ul><li>Stewardship is the responsibility we have to protect & preserve our natural resources for future generations </li></ul><ul><li>The quality of water in the Great Lakes is a reflection of land uses & natural features found in its watershed </li></ul>
  5. 5. Stewardship <ul><li>Each year rainfall & snowmelt only replenish 1% of the water in the Great Lakes watershed (the other 99% is non-renewable) </li></ul><ul><li>Unlimited residential, commercial, & industrial water withdrawals, along with pollution’s depletion of clean water, can weaken the ability to sustain communities & wildlife </li></ul>
  6. 6. Current Great Lakes Water Issues <ul><li>Water Diversion </li></ul><ul><li>Water Quality </li></ul><ul><li>Invasive Species </li></ul><ul><li>Water Levels </li></ul>
  7. 7. Water Diversion <ul><li>1848-1899 </li></ul><ul><li>Chicago River reversed </li></ul><ul><li>Diverted water from Lake Michigan down the Chicago Sanitary & Ship Canal & eventually into the Mississippi River </li></ul><ul><li>Reversed the flow of untreated domestic sewage into Lake Michigan & Chicago’s drinking water supplies </li></ul>
  8. 8. Source: Chicago Historical Society
  9. 9. Water Diversion <ul><li>International Joint Commission (IJC) established in 1909 by the Boundary Waters Treaty to help prevent & resolve disputes related to the use & quality of boundary waters </li></ul><ul><li>Council of Great Lakes Governors (CGLG) formed in 1985 to tackle the severe economic & environmental challenges facing the Great Lakes </li></ul>
  10. 10. Water Diversion <ul><li>3 policies govern diversion of Great Lakes water: </li></ul><ul><li>1909 Boundary Waters Treaty – refrain from any water resource uses that would harm the waters of the other country </li></ul><ul><li>1986 Water Resources Development Act – requires approval of all Great Lakes governors on any proposed water diversion </li></ul><ul><li>2008 Great Lakes-St. Lawrence River Basin Water Resources Compact – includes standards & processes to be used when reviewing diversion proposals </li></ul>
  11. 11. Current Great Lakes Water Issues <ul><li>Water Diversion </li></ul><ul><li>Water Quality </li></ul><ul><li>Invasive Species </li></ul><ul><li>Water Levels </li></ul>
  12. 12. Water Quality <ul><li>1972 Clean Water Act </li></ul><ul><li>Cornerstone of surface water quality protection in the U.S. (does not deal directly with groundwater or water quantity issues) </li></ul><ul><li>Established the basic structure for regulating discharges of pollutants into the waters of the U.S. </li></ul>
  13. 13. Water Quality <ul><li>1972 Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement </li></ul><ul><li>Expressed the commitment of the U.S. & Canada to restore & maintain the chemical, physical, & biological integrity of the Great Lakes basin </li></ul>
  14. 14. Current Great Lakes Water Issues <ul><li>Water Diversion </li></ul><ul><li>Water Quality </li></ul><ul><li>Invasive Species </li></ul><ul><li>Water Levels </li></ul>
  15. 15. Invasive Species <ul><li>1990 Nonindigenous Aquatic Nuisance Prevention & Control Act </li></ul><ul><li>Required ships entering the Great Lakes after operating outside the U.S. 200 nautical mile “exclusive economic zone” to exchange their ballast water in the high seas or otherwise treat it </li></ul>
  16. 16. Invasive Species <ul><li>2007 National Aquatic Invasive Species Act </li></ul><ul><li>Every ship must have an Aquatic Invasive Species Management Plan, carry out Best Management Practices, document all ballast operations & management activities, & comply with treatment requirements </li></ul>
  17. 17. Current Great Lakes Water Issues <ul><li>Water Diversion </li></ul><ul><li>Water Quality </li></ul><ul><li>Invasive Species </li></ul><ul><li>Water Levels </li></ul>
  18. 18. Water Levels <ul><li>Since the winter of 1999-2000 water levels in the upper Great Lakes have been low relative to their long-term average </li></ul><ul><li>This 9 year low has only been exceeded once in the last 145 years of record keeping during the 12 year low of the dust bowl era </li></ul>
  19. 19. Source: U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
  20. 20. Source: U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
  21. 21. Source: U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
  22. 22. Stewardship <ul><li>While there are on-going efforts to help protect & preserve the Great Lakes on a state & federal level, there is also a lot YOU can do in your everyday life to protect this precious natural resource </li></ul>
  23. 24. Teaching the Station <ul><li>3 main concepts: </li></ul><ul><li>Stewardship </li></ul><ul><li>Watersheds </li></ul><ul><li>Food Web </li></ul>
  24. 25. Watershed <ul><li>A watershed is the land water flows across or under on its way to a stream, river, or lake </li></ul><ul><li>The landscape is made up of many interconnected watersheds separated from each other by landforms such as ridge lines or mountain divides </li></ul>
  25. 28. Watersheds <ul><li>Understanding the water quality of the Great Lakes involves investigating the condition of the contributing watershed </li></ul><ul><li>Concerned with land use practices that might affect the quality of the water (point & non-point source pollution) </li></ul>
  26. 29. Source: EPA Great Lakes National Program Office
  27. 30. Watersheds <ul><li>What you do to protect water in your hometown affects the quality of water in nearby streams, rivers, lakes, the Great Lakes, & the Atlantic Ocean </li></ul>
  28. 31. Teaching the Station… <ul><li>3 main concepts: </li></ul><ul><li>Stewardship </li></ul><ul><li>Watersheds </li></ul><ul><li>Food Web </li></ul>
  29. 32. Food Web <ul><li>A food web describes the feeding relationships between different organisms </li></ul>
  30. 33. Feeding Relationships <ul><li>Producers: organisms that produce their own food through photosynthesis using sunlight & nutrients </li></ul><ul><li>Consumers: organisms that cannot produce their own food (need to consume another organism to obtain energy) </li></ul><ul><li>Decomposers: organisms that break down organic material </li></ul>
  31. 35. Bioaccumulation <ul><li>Bioaccumulation refers to the accumulation of contaminants in the tissues of organisms </li></ul><ul><li>Many contaminants are hydrophobic (they prefer to be in the lipids/fats of an organism rather than in water) & are taken up in the fatty tissues of organisms </li></ul>
  32. 36. What is an Invasive Species? <ul><li>Exotic species: a species introduced to areas beyond its native range (a.k.a. alien, non-indigenous, introduced, or non-native species) </li></ul><ul><li>Invasive Species: exotic species that spread from the point of introduction, establish a sustainable population, rapidly reproduce, & are likely to cause economic or environmental harm or harm to human health </li></ul>
  33. 38. <ul><li>Aggressive </li></ul><ul><li>Rapid population growth (high rate of reproduction) </li></ul><ul><li>Lack natural predators in new environment </li></ul><ul><li>Able to tolerate wide range of environmental conditions </li></ul>Successful invaders share several characteristics
  34. 39. Methods of Introduction <ul><li>Deliberate release </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Planting or stocking </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Unintentional </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Escape or release from cultivation, aquariums, aquaculture facilities, bait buckets, other accidental introductions </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Canals </li></ul><ul><li>Ships </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Solid ballast, ballast water, fouling </li></ul></ul>
  35. 40. <ul><li>Ballast discharge from foreign ships is the #1 method of introduction for exotic species </li></ul><ul><li>Responsible for 72% </li></ul><ul><li>of all established introductions from 1959-2000 </li></ul>
  36. 41. How Many Exotic Species Are In The Great Lakes? <ul><li>Total ≈ 185 </li></ul><ul><li>NOAA Great Lakes Aquatic Nonindigenous Species List </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>
  37. 42. <ul><li>This is NOT a new problem </li></ul><ul><li>This problem is not unique to the Great Lakes Region </li></ul><ul><li>This is not a problem that is limited to aquatic environments </li></ul>Clarification
  38. 43. Why should we care? <ul><li>Ecological impacts </li></ul><ul><li>Largest threat to loss of biodiversity </li></ul><ul><li>Food web alteration </li></ul><ul><li>Water quality/contaminant transfer </li></ul>
  39. 44. Why should we care? <ul><li>Economic impacts </li></ul><ul><li>Estimated to cost $5 billion annually in the Great Lakes region ($138 billion annually in the U.S.) </li></ul>
  40. 45. <ul><li>It is nearly impossible to eradicate an </li></ul><ul><li>Established invasive species </li></ul><ul><li>For this reason, we must focus on </li></ul>Control Measures PREVENTION
  41. 46. Sources <ul><li>Chicago Historical Society http:// / </li></ul><ul><li>Environmental Protection Agency Great Lakes National Program Office http:// / </li></ul><ul><li>United States Army Corps of Engineers http:// / </li></ul><ul><li>All pictures and drawings not cited during the presentation were provided by Inland Seas Education Association. These pictures can be used freely for educational purposes if ISEA is correctly attributed. All commercial use of these pictures requires written consent from ISEA. </li></ul>