Donald Trump seems to be following the timeless March mantra of “In like a lion.” He recently proposed the slashing of The Great Lakes funding by 97%. Well there goes the neighborhood.
And by neighborhood I mean my neighborhood.
I recognize that there are environmental injustices everywhere, but this one is happening in my backyard, like literally. That is right! I am a proud Great Lakes girl, born and bred. This initial 2018 budget proposal basically kills the Great Lakes restoration Initiative by slashing the grant program down to 10 million from 300 million. Um, that is no slash. That there is a downright massacre! Simply put, the GLRI is multi year, multi agency effort to clean up the Great Lakes. It works to ensure that the pollution remains at a minimum while the ecology of the lakes maintains its balance. Along with our neighbors to the north America has invested some 2.2 billion dollars in the project. That is a boatload of money, but it is being spent on a precious and finite resource. The Great Lakes contain some 95% of America’s fresh water supply and provide drinking water for some thirty million people and those are some very real and important statistics.
Should this cut proceed I for one am not looking forward to being surrounded by polluted bodies of water. It isn’t like we haven’t been there before though. Back in the 1960’s Lake Erie was coined ” North America’s Dead Sea.” Thanks to some 64 million pounds of phosphorus being dumped into the body of water mass areas of Erie went dead. My mom and her siblings grew up on Erie’s shores at the height of the pollution. They used to play this (gross) game where they would go underwater and try to come up without a dead fish sitting on there heads. That is how bad it was. I am not talking about a couple floaters here and there, we are talking The Walking Dead aquatic version.