Task Force/Steering Committee

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Buffalo Reef Task Force

See the Task Force Timeline

In 2017, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency agreed to provide $3.1 million requested by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources to dredge in a natural trough area north of Buffalo Reef in summer 2019.

The dredging is intended to buy five to seven years for the multi-entity Buffalo Reef Task Force, which was created by the EPA to develop a long-term management plan to protect the reef, Grand Traverse Bay Harbor and associated resources – including lake trout and lake whitefish spawning and rearing areas.

A steering committee was named for the task force, including Stephanie Swart, lake coordinator, Office of the Great Lakes, Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy in Lansing, Michigan; Evelyn Ravindran, natural resources director, Keweenaw Bay Indian Community in L’Anse, Michigan; and Tony Friona, liaison to the Great Lakes for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Engineer Research and Development Center in Buffalo, New York.

In early 2018, the committee organized a public meeting in Lake Linden and a meeting of scientists at Michigan Technological University in Houghton, to organize efforts to save Buffalo Reef.

More meetings are planned to take place later this year. Meanwhile, the search for a beneficial use for the stamp sands threatening the reef is under way. Potential methods to contain the stamp sands are also being analyzed.

Steering Committee Members

Stephanie Swart
Lake Coordinator
Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy, Office of the Great Lakes
Lansing, Michigan
swarts@michigan.gov
517-284-5046

Tony Friona
Liaison to the Great Lakes
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers – Engineer Research and Development Center
Buffalo, New York
anthony.m.friona@usace.army.mil
716-832-5384

Evelyn Ravindran
Natural Resources Director
Keweenaw Bay Indian Community
L’Anse, Michigan
eravindran@kbic-nsn.gov
906-524-5757, ext. 11