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Environment & Climate Change

New Great Lakes leadership

empirebluff.jpg
Photo by Rebecca Williams
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The view from the Empire Bluff hiking trail.

Governor Rick Snyder picked outgoing Republican state Senator Patty Birkholtz to lead the Office of the Great Lakes. As you might guess, the director of this office oversees all things Great Lakes. Birkholtz will advise the governor and make policy recommendations on everything from Asian carp to water use.

Birkholtz says protecting the Great Lakes will lead to a stronger economy.

“When we have a healthy Great Lakes system we have more jobs here in this state as well as regionally, and if we don’t have a healthy Great Lakes system it’s a detriment to not only the jobs situation but also businesses locating here."

Birkholtz says her top priority will be to keep new invasive species out of the Lakes. She says she’ll go to Washington next month to urge Congress to allocate more money for Great Lakes cleanup projects.