LANSING, Michigan (WLUC) – July east Lake Appreciation Month. The pledge highlights the rich ecosystems, fresh drinking water, recreational appeal and economic vitality that Michigan’s 11,000 inland lakes and four bordering Great Lakes provide.
“In Michigan, our lakes – large and small – define us. Every Michigander is dedicated to protecting our lakes and ensuring that we pass them on to future generations,” Governor Whitmer said. “This July, when so many of us are enjoying our Pure Michigan experiences, we can reflect on how Michigan’s lakes, rivers, wetlands and groundwater enrich our lives. Protecting them means addressing generational challenges such as aging infrastructure, invasive species and climate change. Together I know we will.
To appreciate Michigan’s lakes is also to respect them, especially the immense power of the Great Lakes. When planning a summer trip to Great Lakes beaches, always exercise caution, pay attention to beach flag warnings (if any), and be aware that the lakes are prone to dangerous rip currents, crashing waves and rapidly changing weather conditions.
Of Michigan’s more than 100 state parks, 42 offer access to the Great Lakes coastline, making them popular destinations for gatherings with family and friends. The Michigan Department of Natural Resources (DNR) offers safety advice and information everyone should know before taking the plunge.
The Wisconsin-based nonprofit North American Lake Management Society (NALMS) promotes Lake Appreciation Month internationally, with at least 25 US states and three Canadian provinces joining this year’s effort. NALMS encourages lake-related activities including shoreline cleanups, educational tours, boating, swimming, bird watching and photography.
Here are resources to learn more about Michigan’s lakes and how to keep them healthy:
- OGL’s 2021 State of the Great Lakes Report: Find out how Michigan’s investment in water infrastructure will pay dividends for decades to come.
- Coastal Zone Management Program: The program provides technical assistance and grants to help coastal communities mitigate coastal risks, create healthy habitats, support ecotourism, ensure safe public access, and support resilient and sustainable economies.
- Advice on climate solutions: The Board acts in an advisory capacity to the Governor and EGLE to oversee the implementation of the MI Healthy Climate Plan.
- Monitoring the water quality of lakes and beaches: The Surface Water Assessment Section oversees the protection of surface water quality throughout the State of Michigan.
- MiCorps Volunteer Lake and River Monitoring Program: The Michigan Clean Water Corps is a network of volunteer water quality monitoring programs in Michigan.
- Michigan Shoreland Stewards Program: The program recognizes shoreline property owners who protect inland lakes through best management practices on their property.
- Restoration of Legacy Contamination from Great Lakes Areas of Concern: Michigan’s AOC program works with federal and local partners to remediate designated sites impacted by legacy contamination and development.
- Michigan Aquatic Invasive Species Cooperative: A guide to species that are not native and have the potential to harm human health or natural or agricultural resources.
- Clean Water State Revolving Fund: This low-interest loan financing program helps qualified local municipalities build the water pollution control facilities they need.
- Subsidies for diffuse pollution: The program helps local stakeholders reduce non-point source pollution and excessive runoff by supporting efforts to develop and implement watershed management plans.
- Impacts of Great Lakes High Water Levels: Find information on permits and technical resources to mitigate shoreline erosion and flooding.
- Shoreline Management Program: Learn more about the evolution of shorelines and the options to protect them.
- Shoreline Protection Information and Resources: EGLE recommends the use of natural shoreline treatments, or bio-engineering, for shoreline protection.
- Great Lakes Coordination Program: The program leads the efforts of state agencies and collaboration among partners to improve the stewardship and sustainability of the Great Lakes.
- BeachGuard monitoring system: This public resource provides information on Michigan beaches, including water quality sampling results and beach advisories and closures.
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