December 21, 2009
- Michigan Attorney General Mike
Cox today announced he has asked the United States Supreme Court to immediately
order federal, state, and local officials responsible for Chicago-area
locks and waterways to close them in order to
stop Asian carp from entering the Great Lakes. The fish are an aggressive
invasive species that could quickly devastate Great Lakes fish populations,
causing severe damage to Michigan's economy by ruining the Great Lakes' $7
billion fishing and tourism industries.
"Stopping Asian carp is an economic and environmental necessity
for Michigan," said Cox. "The Great Lakes are an irreplaceable resource.
Thousands of jobs are at stake and we will not get a second chance once the carp
enter Lake Michigan."
of Illinois and federal authorities have not been enough to assure us the Lakes
are safe," Cox continued. "That's why the waterways must be shut down until we
are assured that Michigan will be protected."
Cox today filed suit in the U.S. Supreme Court asking for the
The suit comes after Illinois and federal authorities reportedly
executed the largest fish kill in Illinois history in response to the discovery
of Asian carp DNA just miles from Lake Michigan. That action uncovered a carp
near the electrical barrier, causing Cox to call for immediate action to once
and for all address the potential devastation of the Great Lakes, before it is
"The U.S. Army
Corps of Engineers has itself admitted allowing Asian carp into the Great Lakes
would be an "ecological and economic disaster,"" said Cox. "Michigan families
whose jobs and way of life depend on the health of the Great Lakes deserve to
know there is a long-term solution to this crisis."
has appointed veteran assistant attorneys general Peter Manning and Robert
Reichel to lead the team of lawyers handling this case.
Cox's office has aggressively
protected Michigan's water resources, previously suing the federal government
multiple times to compel them to address the threat to our waters from invasives.
He also went to court to successfully defend Michigan's first-in-the-nation
ballast water statute.
- 30 -