Great Lakes Restoration Initiative's Future

Cattails (Typha latifolia). A ubiquitous invasive in much of North America. Credit: Bogdan, wikimedia.org

Cattails (Typha latifolia). A ubiquitous invasive in much of North America. Credit: Bogdan, wikimedia.org

     The Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI), which has allocated $300,000 annually since 2010 to various watershed restoration projects in the area, is now facing an uncertain future. Up for renewal, the GLRI has been passed by the House of Representatives, while it is still waiting on Senate approval. Once that hurdle is passed, the initiative may still face future defunding, depending on the outcome of the presidential election or whether it could be funded through a different federal agency than the EPA.

     And that puts projects like Brad Mudrzynski's on uncertain grounds. Digging channels to help pike get closer to shore and lay their eggs, he and his team have been working to keep invasive cattails at bay. "One of the focus points of this project is to create northern pike spawning habitat," he said.

     Jill Jedlicka with the Buffalo River Keeper said the Initiative regularly provides resources to a variety of projects in her area as well. "They can range everywhere from the small scale, localized habitat restoration or shoreline improvement programs, to the large-scale full river restoration that was the Buffalo River Restoration," she said.

     To learn more about the GLRI and some of its associated projects, click here or below to see the original article from wbfo.org.