Press Release

ELPC Commends Senate Committee Vote to Increase Great Lakes Restoration Initiative Funding

“We appreciate Sen. Debbie Stabenow’s leadership on this important bipartisan legislation to protect the Great Lakes”


 STATEMENT BY HOWARD A. LEARNER
EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, ENVIRONMENTAL LAW & POLICY CENTER

 Washington, D.C. – The U.S. Senate Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee today voted to advance legislation that would reauthorize the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI) with increased annual funding to $500 million for fiscal 2027 through 2031. The successful program has strong bipartisan support. The GLRI funds have been effectively deployed to protect safe clean drinking water supplies, clean up toxic sites, protect wetlands and shorelines, hold off invasive species from entering the Great Lakes, and safeguard aquatic resources.

The Great Lakes contain 21% of the planet’s surface fresh water supply, and provides a rich aquatic habitat for many species. They support a $7 billion annual fishing industry, and Great Lakes recreation draws millions of tourists who boost the economies of shoreline communities. The bill now moves to the full Senate for a vote.

In response to today’s committee action, Environmental Law & Policy Center Executive Director Howard Learner said:

“The Environmental Law & Policy Center commends the Senate EPW Committee for reauthorizing the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative through FY 2031 and increasing funding for its successful programs. We especially appreciate Sen. Debbie Stabenow for her leadership on this important bipartisan legislation to protect the Great Lakes.

“We look forward to this GLRI legislation passing the full Senate and the House, and getting to President Biden’s desk for signature. The Great Lakes is where we live, work and play. Protecting safe clean drinking water, healthy fisheries and enjoyable outdoor recreation is a value shared by all.”

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