Everywhere I turn, the Great Lakes are on people’s minds. When I came back from the International Joint Commission’s Great Lakes Water Quality Board meeting in Windsor recently, I felt like interest in our sweetwater seas is on the rise.
Representatives from eight Great Lake states and two provinces gathered to provide advice to IJC and engage the public on Great Lakes issues. This was the 185th time the board has met.
It was one of the first times that they held a public engagement event featuring an artist. Sarah Harmer is a musician from the Niagara Escarpment, and a respected environmental leader in her own right. I was honoured to be part of a panel with her in Windsor and utterly inspired by her “postcards” (short stories) from all five Great Lakes.
There are many institutions working on water protection in different Great Lakes communities. The Water Quality Board meeting represents a rare opportunity to reflect on the unique nature of the entire basin – from Lake Superior’s furthest reaches in the west to the St. Lawrence River in the east. There is no region on earth quite like this.
My hope is that conversations about the future of these lakes continue and that we see more groups of people from disparate communities coming together. Because the Great Lakes are worth it.
Read more on this event from the Windsor Star.