Brandenburg cosponsors resolution urging Washington, D.C. act to prevent Asian carp from entering Great Lakes

LANSING, Mich.—A resolution calling on Congress to pass legislation to authorize the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to implement measures at the Joliet, Illinois-based Brandon Road lock and dam to prevent Asian carp from entering the Great Lakes was recently introduced in the Michigan Senate, said Sen. Jack Brandenburg.

Existing controls in the Chicago area cannot fully prevent the movement of Asian carp and potential future aquatic invasive species between the Great Lakes and Mississippi River systems. A U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service study indicates the electrical barriers on the front line of protection against the carp do not prevent the movement of all fish.

Brandenburg said implementing controlling measures would reduce the risk of an Asian carp invasion, while maintaining efficient navigation.

“Installing these highly-recommended, innovative controlling measures combined with a reconfiguration of the locks will go a long way toward protecting Michigan’s precious Great Lakes and natural resources from Asian carp and other potential invasive species,” said Brandenburg, R-Harrison Township, a cosponsor of Senate Resolution 25. “This is a critical moment to act to protect one of the world’s largest bodies of fresh water, and I strongly urge Congress to let the Army Corps of Engineers do its job.”

Brandenburg also cosponsored Senate Resolution 12 last February, which called on President Barack Obama to act to help prevent Asian carp from entering Lake Michigan and the Great Lakes by closing the Chicago locks and ending water diversions from the Great Lakes through the Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal.

SRs 12 and 25 were referred to the Senate Natural Resources Committee.


Brandenburg: Higher lake water levels a boon for 8th District, state

LANSING, Mich. — State Sen. Jack Brandenburg said Thursday that news of increased levels on the Great Lakes and Lake St. Clair is great news for Michigan’s tourism, boating, fishing and shipping industries.

A recent U.S. Army Corps of Engineers report indicates that Lake St. Clair is 11 inches above last year’s level, while Lakes Superior, and Michigan and Huron are 6 and 20 inches higher, respectively. The corps predicts all five Great Lakes and Lake St. Clair will continue to rise throughout spring and into the summer months.

“Higher water levels on Lake St. Clair and the Great Lakes benefits everyone — from commercial shipping and fishing vessels, to recreational boaters, sailors and fishermen, to tourists enjoying Michigan’s world-class beaches,” said Brandenburg, R-Harrison Township, recipient of the Boating Industry Association 2014 Legislator of the Year Award. “Not too long ago we were facing record low lake levels, so this is great news.”

In 2013, the corps reported Lakes Michigan and Huron had reached their lowest levels on record, dating back to 1918. Erie, Superior and Ontario were also well below average that year as well.

To read the complete U.S. Army Corps of Engineers report, visit this website.