AWRI Newsletter #37: January 2005

As many of you are aware, AWRI's home---the Lake Michigan Center, sits on the shoreline of Muskegon Lake, one of only 43 bodies of water in the Great Lakes to be classified by the International Joint Commission as an Area of Concern (AOC) because of significant environmental contamination.  The discharge of industrial wastes and municipal sewage resulted in severe degradation of water quality, fisheries, and aquatic habitats.   Beginning in the 1970s, there have been diligent efforts by the local units of government, Muskegon Lake Public Advisory Council (PAC), as well as a few, dedicated citizens (such as Drs. Bill Jackson and Bill Schroeder, Jr.) to improve the environmental status of the lake.  Today, AWRI is intimately involved in this process, with Rick Rediske serving as Chair of the PAC, and Janet Vail and Al Steinman also members of the PAC.  In addition, Carl Ruetz, Bopi Biddanda, and Don Uzarski have been providing technical expertise as we begin the process of setting scientifically-defensible restoration targets for the impairments that have adversely affected Muskegon Lake.  Rick Rediske received grants from the U.S. EPA and the State of Michigan to get the restoration target-setting process rolling for the Muskegon Lake and White Lake AOCs.  Over the next few months, AWRI faculty and staff will be lending their scientific expertise to the PAC and community as a whole, as we start the long process of getting Muskegon Lake de-listed as an Area of Concern.

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