Great Lakes Water Levels A Concern


Great Lakes water levels have dropped precipitously to lows.

More unsettling news from the Great Lakes: According to recent reports from hydrologists and shipping companies, the Great Lakes are experiencing record* low water levels that have persisted since January. This has become an ongoing problem for the region. Below average water levels in the lakes pose a huge difficulty for freighter-based commerce on the lakes, as well as for individuals seeking recreation on the water.

Even more frightening is what the water levels suggest about the impact of climate change on our region, as low levels are considered one of the potential consequences of climate.**
Watch the report from NBC news here.
You may also be interested in meteorologist Bill Steffen’s response to this post here.

*Update:  It is debatable as to whether the low levels constitute “record” lows.  In addition, lake levels have begun to rise since the time of the original NBC news report, as would be expected given the flooding that occurred in West Michigan recently.

**Update: WMEAC is concerned about all the various ways climate change impacts our state’s natural resources, we would hesitate to make any specific claims about a relationship between current low lake levels and climate change, just as we would hesitate to define the relationship between climate change and the flood of 2013.  Obviously these issues are connected, and it is indeed frightening, but the statement as phrased can be read to suggest a more direct causality.

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