Great Lakes Politicians File Unnecessary Lawsuit Responding to Asian Carp

July 19, 2010

Five Great Lakes States Sue Chicago Agency and U.S. Army Corps to Force Ineffective, Costly Solutions

SPRINGFIELD, Ill., July 19 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — Today, Attorneys General representing five Great Lakes states filed a federal lawsuit against the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago in efforts to force short-term, costly and ineffective solutions to the prevent Asian carp from entering Lake Michigan. The lawsuit demands immediate closure of the Chicago area locks, additional barrier installation in the Chicago River and, echoing congressional legislation introduced in Washington, a rushed study to address permanent separation of the Great Lakes from the Mississippi River Basin. The Supreme Court rejected a previous similar lawsuit filed by Michigan Attorney General Mike Cox.

Addressing each point in the lawsuit filed by Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin, UnLock Our Jobs – an organization working towards a comprehensive solution to stop the spread of Asian carp, while leaving the Chicago locks open to commerce – released the following statement:

“This is yet another example of the political grandstanding that is counterproductive to this debate,” said Mark Biel, executive director of the Chemical Industry Council of Illinois. “The Army Corps already stated lock closure will not lower chances of Asian carp entering Lake Michigan; it absolutely devastates waterway commerce and does nothing to help the situation. Furthermore, the demands for additional barriers are completely gratuitous – plans for an additional electric barrier are already in motion. Why is it necessary to sue unless these politicians are focused primarily on getting their names in headlines?

Biel continued, “Just like the legislation introduced recently in Washington, this lawsuit also demands the Army Corps complete a five year study on next steps in less than 18 months. The end goal in this debate should be a comprehensive, effective, long-term solution. Politically motivated individuals across the region have demonstrated with this most recent frivolous lawsuit they’re much more interested in scoring political points with a rushed study that seems predetermined to support economically devastating and drastic solutions like hydrological separation. All this panic is in response to one, isolated fish found in Lake Calumet and as of yet, we still don’t even know how it got there. Superfluous lawsuits, name calling and political grandstanding have no place here – regional leaders must come together in support of solutions driven by facts and science.”

For additional information regarding this or related issues, please visit UnLock Our Jobs‘ website for detailed resources.

To speak with any UnLock Our Jobs experts, please contact Lisa Burgess at lisa@unlockourjobs.org or (202) 257-0983.

UnLock Our Jobs is a coalition dedicated to protecting the essential waterway connection between the Great Lakes and the Mississippi River corridor. A project of the Chemical Industry Council of Illinois, coalition members represent agriculture, business, labor, river communities, and concerned citizens working towards a comprehensive solution to stop the spread of Asian carp, while leaving the Chicago locks open to commerce.

SOURCE UnLock Our Jobs

Source: newswire

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