Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement

The agreement has been amended and updated over the decades, the last time in 2012, to better meet the challenges of the Great Lakes Basin. U.S. states and Canadian provinces are fully involved in this process to ensure the success of cooperative recovery, and Pennsylvania is working with GLWQA subcommittees and working groups. Citizens are encouraged to visit the GLWQA website to learn more about the bi-national agreement, www.binational.net The 2012 agreement will facilitate U.S. and Canadian action to threaten Great Lakes water quality and strengthen measures to anticipate and prevent environmental damage. The new provisions address invasive aquatic species, habitat degradation and the effects of climate change and support further work on existing threats to the health and environment of Great Lakes Basin populations, such as harmful algae, toxic chemicals and ship releases. Pennsylvania is one of eight U.S. governments and two Canadian provinces with coastal tributaries and tributaries to the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence River Basin, as well as one of five states and provinces that share responsibility for water quality in Lake Erie Basin. In 1972, the United States and Canada signed the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement (GLWQA) to create a framework for the restoration, protection and management of common water resources in the Great Lakes. Since the last amendment to the agreement in 1987, approaches to environmental management and our understanding of the ecosystem have evolved. The 2012 agreement reflects this progress by introducing a new focus on coastal water quality and adaptive management approaches. Through the GLWQA, in Canada and the United States, programs, technologies and other measures needed to better understand the Great Lakes ecosystem and restore and protect water quality and ecosystem health will be developed by GLWQA, Canada and the United States, in consultation and cooperation with the governments of the federal states and provinces.

, Densosten, Dener Non-Nations and Métis, local authorities, watershed management agencies and other local public bodies. As part of the agreement, Canada and the United States are working, in cooperation and consultation with other levels of government, Aboriginal peoples, non-governmental institutions and the public to restore and protect water quality and ecosystem health. The United States and Canada first signed the agreement in 1972. It was amended in 1983 and 1987. In 2012, it was updated to improve water quality programs that ensure the “chemical, physical and biological integrity” of the Great Lakes. The GLWQA is committed to addressing the priority challenges of water quality and Great Lakes health, which are organized by 10 annexes: Areas of Concern; Lakewide Management; Chemicals of mutual concern; Nutrients Ship discharges; invasive aquatic species; Habitat and species groundwater The effects of climate change and science. In addition, Canada and the United States have committed to submit their own progress reports every three years at a public forum. The IJC will review this report and its own research and solicit public contributions on lake health before publishing its assessment report, also on a three-year basis. The first government progress report was published in October 2016 and, at the same time, a public forum for the Great Lakes was held. In November 2017, the IJC published its first report on the three-year progress assessment, as well as a highlights report, a technical appendix and a summary of the public notice appendix. Public consultations on the progress of the agreement will begin after the two countries have published each progress report and will be announced via the Great Lakes Connection newsletter, its social media pages and on this site.