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Document Type

Article

Abstract

The Great Lakes hold the largest freshwater system on Earth. Both a highly valuable and vulnerable asset, the United States and Canada have established myriad laws and agencies to protect against environmental degradation in the Great Lakes region. This Article discusses the organizations that preserve this precious resource. These organizations are not an exhaustive list and are limited to principle organizations working with respect to aquatic nuisance species in the Great Lakes. Here, the objective is to define the goals, administrative processes, and relations between all of these organizations. This Article relates these functions, based on prior environmental proceedings, to a pending aquatic nuisance species issue in the Great Lakes: the Asian carp infiltration. Finally, this Article advocates for an overarching governmental organization to manage and control all of the current agencies and organizations. Part II provides information on the environmental organizations that work to solve the aquatic nuisance species problem in the Great Lakes. Part II discusses how the aquatic nuisance species problem creates a need for cooperation. Further, it summarizes the laws that give power to the organizations in the Great Lakes to aid the ballast water issue, including the Non-Indigenous Aquatic Nuisance Prevention and Control Act, the National Invasive Species Act of 1996, and the Lacey Act. Part II also provides a discussion of how state law fills in gaps in the federal regulatory framework. Part III supplies a list of the main organizations that serve, protect, and restore the environment in the Great Lakes. These organizations include the National Invasive Species Council, Aquatic Nuisance Species Task Force, the United States Environmental Protection Agency, and the International Joint Commission. Part IV discusses a pending issue regarding Asian carp, an aquatic nuisance species in the Great Lakes, and explains how these organizations are likely to manage the Asian carp and the potential environmental problems it presents. Part IV also proposes an overarching governmental organization to manage and control all of the current agencies and organizations.

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