WASHINGTON, D.C. – Rep. Sander Levin (D-MI) issued the following statement in response to reports that the Trump Administration has proposed cutting the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI) funding from $300 million to $10 million.
“Given the success of this critical program around the region, it’s unconscionable that the President would slash funding for the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative,” said Rep. Levin. “We must continue to have a strong federal commitment.”
The GLRI has also accelerated the cleanup of Areas of Concern (AOC) around the Great Lakes. Since 2009, three sites – including White Lake in Michigan – have been de-listed. As a comparison, between the identification of AOCs in 1985 and 2005, only one site was cleaned up and del-listed.
Over the last eight years, with bipartisan support from Congress, the federal government has invested nearly $2 billion on more than 2,000 GLRI projects. This inter-agency program focuses on five major Great Lakes ecosystem problems: cleaning up the Great Lakes Areas of Concern (AOC), fighting invasive species, targeting nearshore nonpoint pollution, restoring habitat and protecting wildlife, and promoting environmental education and partnerships.