Congressmen Tim Ryan and Tim Walberg Renew Push to Protect Great Lakes from Harmful Algae Blooms
Washington, D.C. – Congressmen Tim Ryan (OH-13) and Tim Walberg (MI-07) reintroduced the Great Lakes Agricultural Stewardship Act to promote conservation efforts throughout the Great Lakes region. The bipartisan legislation provides federal assistance to Great Lakes states that administer voluntary assurance programs to help farms minimize agricultural pollution risks, like harmful algae blooms on Lake Erie. These programs, such as the Michigan Agriculture Environmental Assurance Program (MAEAP), have successfully aided farmers to improve conservation, reduce soil erosion, and decrease nutrient runoff.
“The Great Lakes are a vital resource to the Midwest, and it’s critical we do everything in our power to safeguard their health and well-being. Lake Erie alone supports more than 117,000 full-time jobs and provides clean drinking water to approximately 3 million Ohioans,” said Congressman Ryan. “This important legislation encourages greater conservation practices aimed at reducing agricultural run-off which negatively impacts the Great Lakes, farmers, and all Ohioans.”
“Those of us from the Midwest know how central the Great Lakes are to our economy and way of life,” said Congressman Walberg. “Here in Michigan, we have seen positive results through MAEAP – which just celebrated verification of its 5,000th farm – in advancing responsible environmental stewardship of our land and water. Expanding this successful conservation program throughout the region will go a long way to preserve Lake Erie and the entire Great Lakes ecosystem for future generations to enjoy.”