Selected Delisting and Redesignation Efforts and Associated
Michigan Areas of Concern - Delisting of Beneficial Use Impairments (BUI)
- BUI: Degradation of Benthos
River - Delisted Area of Concern
2006, the Oswego River became the first U.S. waterway to be delisted
as an Area of Concern. The status of each of the beneficial use
impairment (BUI) indicators has been resolved and an understanding
has been achieved that a significant impairment and/or threat
to the AOC environment does not exist. The conclusion is that
the lower Oswego River and harbor area no longer warrant the AOC
The New York State
Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC), U.S. EPA,
and other agencies will continue to use the existing suite of
environmental law and regulatory oversight to implement, monitor
and enforce programs that protect the environment in and around
the AOC. The presence of local area environmental groups, concerned
citizens, and the agencies' purview provides a vigilance that
assures beneficial uses will remain intact and that the riverine
system will not revert back to impaired status.
Summary of the 81-page Stage 3 document for the Oswego River
Remedial Action Plan is available for viewing on the NYSDEC web
site. The report was designed specifically to focus on and address
the resolution of the 14 RAP BUI indicators in detail.
information on the delisting of the Oswego River AOC, go to www.dec.state.ny.us/website/dow/oswdlist.html.
For an historical and complete narrative, view the U.S. EPA web
page for the Oswego River at www.epa.gov/glnpo/aoc/oswego.html.
Isle Bay Area of Concern - Area of Recovery Status
2002, the Presque Isle Bay Area of Concern became the first U.S.
AOC to achieve the "Recovery" designation, at the request
of local citizens acting through the AOC’s Public Advisory
Committee (PAC). The Pennsylvania
Department of Environmental Protection (PADEP) and the bay’s
PAC concluded, in April 2002, that the overall health of the brown
bullhead population had improved and that the best method for
remediating the bay’s sediment was to allow natural processes
to improve sediment quality. The U.S. Environmental Protection
Agency concurred with this recommendation and Presque Isle Bay
was redesignated as the first Area of Concern in the "Recovery"
stage. This new designation means that all active remediation
to address the sources of environmental degradation is complete.
See the IJC congratulatory
letter acknowledging the "Recovery" status for Presque Isle
For Presque Isle Bay, the "Recovery" stage designation
is considered a major first step toward eventual delisting. The
PADEP and the Presque Isle Bay PAC are committed to monitoring
to ensure progress continues toward meeting delisting targets
and are working on detailed monitoring plans for sediment, fish
and the watershed. They are also engaging experts on fish pathology,
sampling, and sediment contamination to assist with the development
of delisting targets. Pennsylvania
Sea Grant was awarded several grants from U.S. EPA to establish
a Fish Tumors Task Force and hold two workshops on developing
standardized criteria for the assessment of fish tumor rates in
Areas of Concern.
processes being created to determine when restoration of the fish
tumor impairment is complete will help other AOCs in developing
their own delisting targets. One of the grants (from U.S.
EPA-GLNPO) is to develop histology and field guides to assist
all affected AOCs in conducting fish tumor studies using the same
protocols. For further information, visit:
scroll down to "Conference Proceedings" and select the
"Fish Tumors Conference" links.
River Area of Concern - Fish Tumors and Other Deformities Beneficial
Use Impairment (BUI) Redesignation
2004, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)-Great Lakes
National Program Office approved a requested change in status
of the "Fish Tumors and Other Deformities" BUI in the
Black River AOC from being impaired to that of being in a "Recovery"
stage. See the U.S.
EPA-GLNPO letter of acceptance regarding the proposed
change in status of this impairment.
for Change in Status for the Fish Tumors and Other Deformities
Beneficial Use Impairment, the Black River RAP Coordinating
Committee determined that sufficient progress in the Fish Tumor
or Other Deformities BUI has been documented and that no additional
remedial action steps are necessary.
formal delisting targets for this impairment have been set, either
by the U.S EPA or the International Joint Commission, the Coordinating
Committee has been utilizing the draft Delisting Guidelines for
Ohio Areas of Concern for guidance. The assessment process used
by the Black River Coordinating Committee may be able to provide
a case study for other areas of concern with similar problems.
This re-designation is an important first step in demonstrating
the improvements to the Black River Area of Concern.
Harbour - Delisted Area of Concern
Canadian AOC is situated on the south shore of Nottawasaga Bay,
which constitutes the southern extension of Lake Huron's Georgian
Harbour was the first Area of Concern to be delisted.
In 1994, the governments of Canada and Ontario agreed that impaired
beneficial uses had been restored in accordance with the Great
Lakes Water Quality Agreement, and the two governments removed
Collingwood Harbour from the list of Areas of Concern. Monitoring
work in Collingwood Harbour continues to ensure that restored
ecosystem health of the area remains protected for future generations.
See the IJC
congratulatory letter acknowledging the "Delisted"
status of Collingwood Harbour.
Sound - Delisted Area of Concern
Canadian AOC is located in southeastern Georgian Bay, which lies
in the northeastern portion of Lake Huron. The governments of
Canada and Ontario officially removed Severn
Sound from the list of Areas of Concern in January,
2003. Severn Sound was only the second Great Lakes Areas of Concern
(AOC) to be delisted out of the 43 AOCs originally identified
Sound RAP Stage 3 Report describes the strategy implemented
to restore beneficial uses and meet locally defined goals in the
AOC. The report represents the conclusions of the RAP Team, the
Public Advisory Committee, the local municipalities, the public
at large, the Agencies’ Technical Review Team and ultimately,
the federal and provincial governments. The evidence presented
in the report provides the rationale to remove the designation
of “Area of Concern” from Severn Sound.
document the removal of Severn Sound from the list of Areas of
Concern, as defined by Annex 2 of the Canada-United States Great
Lakes Water Quality Agreement.
Monitoring in Areas of Concern
and Assessing Marsh Habitats in Great Lakes Areas of Concern:
Interim Summary Report of 2005 Project Activities
documents activities and summary results of year one of this two-year
AOC wetland monitoring project, a project aimed to develop and
initiate a wetland monitoring strategy in AOCs where such work
is most needed. The project is based on the Marsh Monitoring Program
(MMP) protocol established by Bird Studies Canada and Environment
Canada in 1994 which utilizes "citizen scientists"
to provide information on marsh bird and selected amphibian populations,
and to contribute to our understanding of their habitat needs.
The MMP contributes to the conservation of wetlands and wetland
dependent wildlife in the Great Lakes region.
For each of the five AOCs where project activities
occurred during 2005, there are interim summary results and discussion
of MMP marsh bird/amphibian, macroinvertebrate community and physical
and chemical water quality data, data that were collected by both
volunteers and project staff. The purpose of this interim report
is simply to report the basic results of wetland monitoring activities
that occurred by both MMP volunteers and MMP field staff for amphibian,
bird, and macroinvertebrate biotic assemblages, and for abiotic
physical and chemical limnology of these wetlands. A more comprehensive
analysis and discussion of all selected AOCs over the two-year
project duration will be completed by January of 2007.
Other RAP Resources
Lakes Water Quality Agreement
Areas of Concern
Joint Commission - Annex 2 - RAP and LaMP Information
Remediation Projects in Great Lakes Areas of Concern
EPA Contaminated Sediments Program
Brief descriptions and links to summaries and proceedings of a variety of workshops and meetings related to Great Lakes Areas of Concern are available on the Workshop & Meeting Proceedings page.
Great Lakes Restoration Initiative
In 2010, the U.S. EPA was provided $475 million for the first year of a new, interagency Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI) targeting significant problems in the region, including invasive aquatic species, non-point source pollution, and contaminated sediment.
The GLRI uses outcome-oriented performance goals and measures to target these problems and track progress in addressing them. U.S. EPA, in concert with its federal partners and other stakeholders, is leading the development and implementation of the GLRI and will administer the funding.
The Great Lakes Commission maintains a list of web links for the GLRI that may be useful to Great Lakes stakeholders who are interested in the GLRI or involved in developing funding proposals.
Lakes Legacy Act
In 2002, Congress passed the Great Lakes Legacy Act to speed the clean up of toxic sediments in the U.S. AOCs. Administered by the U.S. EPA Great Lakes National Program Office, the Legacy Act funds projects that monitor or evaluate contaminated sediment, implement contaminated sediment cleanups or prevent continued sediment contamination. These projects require a 35% non-federal cost-share. The act also provides funding for research and development as well as public outreach and information. Congress renewed the Act in 2008, authorizing:
- $50 million annually to monitor, evaluate or remediate contaminated sediments, or prevent new contamination;
- $3 million annually for research on innovative remediation technologies;
- $1 million annually for public outreach and education;
- the use of Legacy Act funds to restore habitat at contaminated sediment cleanup sites; and
- full federal funding to evaluate contaminated sediment sites.
Program Contact: Marc Tuchman, 312-353-1369, firstname.lastname@example.org
Corps of Engineers Great Lakes Remedial Action Plan Program
This program, authorized in Section 401 of
the Water Resources Development Act of 1990, enables the Corps
to provide technical support in developing and implementing Remedial
Action Plans in Great Lakes Areas of Concern. The program is broad
and can be used to support a wide array of technical, planning
and engineering assistance to state and local governments and,
in some cases, nongovernmental entities. This can include support
for environmental monitoring, watershed planning, mapping and
surveys, computer modeling, evaluation and design of remedial
options, cost estimating, etc.
program can support new projects, or potentially expand the scope
of existing efforts. The Corps' assistance is not provided in
the form of a grant. Instead, the Corps provides the assistance
and the local sponsor provides 35 percent of the cost in non-federal
funds or through in-kind services. Funding under the program is
allocated on a first-come, first-serve basis. The application
process begins with contact, by phone, email or letter, from a
state or local agency or non-profit group expressing interest
in the program and outlining a potential project. The Corps then
works with the prospective partner to outline a scope of work,
schedule, and budget and confirms the nonfederal cost-share. Once
the scope and cost sharing have been agreed upon, a support agreement
is signed by the sponsor and the Corps.
- Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota - Marty Kuhn, 313-226-2015,
- Illinois and Indiana - Gene Fleming, 312-846-5585,
- New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio - Bryan Hinterberger, 716-879-4409,
Lakes Program Funding
U.S. EPA’s Great Lakes National Program Office provides funding pursuant to pursuant to (i) §104 of the Clean Water Act and (ii) §118 of the Clean Water Act calling for the achievement of the goals in the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement, the principal goal of that Agreement being the restoration and maintenance of the chemical, physical, and biological integrity of the Great Lakes basin.
Projects are expected to advance protection and restoration of the Great Lakes ecosystem in support of (i) Goal 4 (Healthy Communities and Ecosystems), Objective 3 (Ecosystems), Subobjective 3 (Improve the Health of Great Lakes Ecosystems) of USEPA’s Strategic Plan and (ii) the Great Lakes Regional Collaboration Strategy to Protect and Restore the Great Lakes.
Lakes Basin Program for Soil Erosion and Sediment Control
of this program is to protect and improve water quality in the
Great Lakes by reducing soil erosion and controlling sedimentation
through financial incentives, information and education, and professional
assistance. Under its grant program, priority consideration may
be given to proposed projects that address soil erosion and sedimentation
problems in areas of special significance including: designated
Areas of Concern; Corps
of Engineers 516(e) sediment modeling watersheds,
areas with high delivery rates; watersheds where erosion and sedimentation
have been identified by local, state and/or federal agencies as
major sources of impairment or where a TMDL has been established;
or water bodies on a state's Section 303 (d) list under the Clean
Water Act. The Great Lakes Basin Program typically issues a request
for proposals (RFP) in late November or December.
- Funding and Grant Sources in the Great Lakes Region
Lakes Information Network (GLIN) link streamlines the process
of searching for Great Lakes-related funding opportunities online.
The site offers a fully searchable database of well over 100 grant,
fellowship and scholarship sources that have relevance for the
Great Lakes audience. The database is updated weekly and enhanced
of Federal Funding Sources for Watershed Protection
site provides a searchable database of financial assistance sources
(grants, loans, cost-sharing) available to fund a variety of watershed
allows organizations to electronically find and apply for competitive
grant opportunities from all federal grant-making agencies. Grants.gov
is THE single access point for over 900 grant programs offered
by the 26 federal grant-making agencies.
Foundation Center - Finding Funders
more than 2,400 annotated links to grantmaker web sites. The links
are categorized by grantmaker type, and all annotations are searchable
(except Community Foundations, which are listed alphabetically
by state). You can also search by name for basic information about
the more than 70,000 private and community foundations in the
Foundation Funding Sources
Lakes Protection Fund
Lakes Fishery Trust
Stewart Mott Foundation
George Gund Foundation
Contacts and Further Information
information regarding the U.S. Areas of Concern program, contact:
Industrial Hwy., Suite 100
- Great Lakes National Program Office
77 W. Jackson