I heard about this on the radio the other day, and it makes me sick to think that this possibly could happen. I'm not an engineer or whatever type of person who verifies this "stuff", but our Great Lake levels are LOW as it is!!!
Town Wants To Suck Lake Michigan Dry With Straws
Poor Great Lakes. Even with all the great gains to combat pollution and keep creepy fish and aliens out of out of the ecosystem, there's always another part of the human race that's chomping at the bit to drain them of their vitality. This time it's New Berlin, a town 15 miles west of Milwaukee that has requested the right to drain the lake of 1.83 million gallons of water a day, because it's not close enough to the watershed.
While we understand the need for water, we were glad to hear that Chicago-based Alliance for the Great Lakes (they sing the "water" part of the Captain Planet song) spoke up yesterday about the request - although the draining of water isn't precisely its main concern. The group, along with 17 other Great Lakes advocates, petitioned Wisconsin's Department of Natural Resources yesterday to deny New Berlin because it would set a precedent for other communities with the same problems to do the same thing.
The alliance is basically saying that the decision isn't the DNR's to make, based loosely on the Great Lakes Compact, an official agreement between the Great Lakes states and the Canadian provinces of Quebec and Ontario that would legally obligate those states to block diversion of water to areas outside the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence River Basin. The problem is that it hasn't been ratified, and because the DNR is saying that New Berlin is promising to divert as much water back into the lake as it plans to take, it's tough cookies to the Compact.
We love the idea of the Compact, which means we definitely don't like New Berlin right now. If the town's request is approved it will violate the ideas behind the agreement, making it that much harder to get through Congress and the legislatures of the involved states. We know that everybody needs water, but we don't like the can of worms that this could open. Seriously, worms! Haven't we done enough??
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