Lake Michigan and Huron levels historic low - Page 2 - SailNet Community
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post #11 of 30 Old 02-07-2013
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Re: Lake Michigan and Huron levels historic low

Hopefully the recent bout of cold weather and snow will help, even if only a tiny bit. Between water diversions, lack of precipitation, warm summers & above average temp. winters (lack of ice cover), the Great Lakes have been hit hard.

Quick, someone open up a Seaward Yachts dealership in the region!

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post #12 of 30 Old 02-07-2013
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Re: Lake Michigan and Huron levels historic low

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Consumptive water uses–uses for which a quantity of water is withdrawn and not replenished–have minor impacts on the Lake Michigan water level. The largest single use of withdrawn surface water for all Lake Michigan basin states is for cooling at thermoelectric power plants (more than 48 percent for Indiana, Illinois, and Wisconsin). This water comes directly from Lake Michigan. Approximately 10 percent of the surface water use in the Illinois, Indiana, and Wisconsin portion of the basin is for industrial purposes (for example, in steel and paper production). In fact, Indiana’s concentration of heavy industry, particularly in its Lake Michigan counties, has made it the nation’s largest industrial water-using state. Agricultural use for irrigation and livestock represents about 4.5 percent of total water use from all sources. Only about 7 percent of surface water use (1.369 Mgal/day) in the Indiana, Illinois, and Wisconsin portion of the basin is for public water supply, and about half for navigation, sanitation, and water quality purposes. Lake Michigan water is diverted at Chicago to the Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal
Lake Michigan | Great Lakes | US EPA
Here is a little info. My impression is that human use of water has a small impact compared to warm/dry winters.

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post #13 of 30 Old 02-07-2013
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Re: Lake Michigan and Huron levels historic low

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Here is a little info. My impression is that human use of water has a small impact compared to warm/dry winters.
If you don't believe that the warm/dry winters have a human driven root cause anyway..
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post #14 of 30 Old 02-07-2013
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Re: Lake Michigan and Huron levels historic low

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If you don't believe that the warm/dry winters have a human driven root cause anyway..
Very true. Actually I amend my last statement: Direct agricultural and industrial water usage has little effect. However,

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The St. Clair has been heavily dredged for over a century, and the federal government has long acknowledged that this human meddling in the riverbed has led to a permanent drop of about 16 inches from Michigan and Huron's long-term average. Wisconsin State Journal

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post #15 of 30 Old 02-08-2013
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Re: Lake Michigan and Huron levels historic low

Agree that irrigation is a minor compared to dredging in the St. Claire. While evaporation is a factor in the normal highs and lows. The erosion of the St Claire river bed has added another 14- 17 inches in the evaporation drop. This is an identified issue, and has state and local government pushing for a fix but nothing is happening. Perhaps our friends to the north could help with a little more pressure on making the repair a priority as we don't seem to be able to set this as a priority. I would not want to think politics are in play but its is a distinct possibility. Huron/Michigan is an international resource and action needs to be take immediately (government time???) to start repairs.
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post #16 of 30 Old 02-08-2013
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Re: Lake Michigan and Huron levels historic low

Another article on the subject.
This one at least speaks of a possible solution, wing dams and submerged dams on the St Claire as I understand it.

Also, isn't it interesting to read that Shippers are taxed to support a harbor maintenance fund, but only about half of the revenue is spent on dredging.
Lets divert that money back into dredging. No?

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post #17 of 30 Old 03-27-2013
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Re: Lake Michigan and Huron levels historic low

Today the Michigan Governor signed a bill for dredging, around 21 to 22 million dollars for recreational channels that are becoming, or are much less accessable, efforts expected to be completed by mid June...yeah...
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post #18 of 30 Old 03-27-2013 Thread Starter
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Re: Lake Michigan and Huron levels historic low

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Today the Michigan Governor signed a bill for dredging, around 21 to 22 million dollars for recreational channels that are becoming, or are much less accessable, efforts expected to be completed by mid June...yeah...
Intersting. Do you have a link to an article about this or something? Interested in whether or not there is a list of locations this work is being done.
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post #19 of 30 Old 03-28-2013
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Re: Lake Michigan and Huron levels historic low

I found a link, lists around 50 projects around the state. I hope one of them is yours...

See which harbors and marinas would be helped with Michigan's emergency dredging plan | MLive.com

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post #20 of 30 Old 03-28-2013
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Re: Lake Michigan and Huron levels historic low

Wow 2.24 million for Frankfort. Are they getting a whole new marina? It would be nice if they put in a break wall to stop the storm surge. Last time we were there a couple years ago during a gale the surge was bad. A power boat was blowing up 7/8 dock lines. Absent owner boat ended up with a hole in it, luckily above the water line.
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