Taking Action on Lake Erie
Michigan’s Lake Erie Domestic Action Plan was developed by the Michigan Departments of Agriculture and Rural Development; Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy; and Natural Resources to reduce the amount of phosphorus, a nutrient, entering the Lake Erie basin. The Domestic Action Plan for Lake Erie sets the road map for reducing phosphorus entering Lake Erie by 40 percent by 2025. Reducing phosphorus inputs to the lake is intended to help reduce occurrences of harmful algal blooms, events where overgrowth of algae can produce harmful toxins.
Michigan's plan is one of several from surrounding states integrated into the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s comprehensive plan released March 2018.
What Michigan is doing:
- Reducing phosphorus loads from the Detroit River watershed, River Raisin watershed, and Michigan’s portion of the Maumee River watershed
- Conducting research to better understand the causes of blooms
- Forming collaborative partnerships to provide technical and financial assistance to farmers
- Reaching out to the public and farmers to promote understanding of good conservation practices
- Promoting wetland restoration and other land management initiatives
News and Updates:
- SEMCOG announces $265,000 in funding for Southeast Michigan green infrastructure projects
- Great Lakes Water Authority exceeds goal of reducing phosphorus in wastewater: The Great Lakes Water Authority has reached a milestone goal six years ahead of schedule.
- Taking action on Lake Erie - January 2019 progress update
- Michigan Releases Final Plan to Improve Lake Erie Water Quality: State agencies submitted their final Lake Erie Domestic Action Plan to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency sharing Michigan’s strategies to improve water quality in Lake Erie and help reduce instances of harmful algal blooms.
- Executive Directive 2019-14: Implementing the Domestic Action Plan for Lake Erie to Decrease Phosphorous by 40% by 2025
- Western Lake Erie Basin Collaborative Agreement
- ErieStat: A Blue Accounting initiative tracking progress toward a healthier Lake Erie
- MI CLEAR Partnership: The Michigan Cleaner Lake Erie through Action and Research partnership includes 20 organizations working to inform Michigan about activities centered around care for Lake Erie.
- Moving Goalposts: The Challenge of Lake Erie Algal Blooms: In this four-part blog series, an agricultural newbie attempts to explain one of the Great Lakes' biggest challenges.
- VIDEO: Investigating the effectiveness of controlled drainage at three farms
- Nutrients Annex of the 2012 Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement
How You Can Help:
- Don’t dump grass clippings or other landscaping debris into any water body
- Never throw anything into a storm drain
- Service your septic system regularly - get SepticSmart
- Dispose of pet waste in the trash or your toilet
- Volunteer with a local conservation group or watershed council
- Follow directions for safe application of fertilizers, herbicides and pesticides