Restoration of the Great Lakes ecosystem has received increasing
attention in the local, state and national levels in recent years as an essential approach for
securing a healthy environment and prosperous economy for the region and the nation.
Constituents (representatives of community groups, harbors and ports, coastal engineering firms, lakeshore development businesses, recreational and commercial fishing interests, educators, universities, environmental organizations, conservation groups, Indian tribes, city and county government, and state and federal government agencies) participated in a series of workshops by the Great Lakes Commission and the Great Lakes Sea Grant programs and determined one of the five most important restoration and protection priorities for Wisconsin waters of the Great Lakes is to enhance fish and wildlife by restoring and protecting habitats and coastal wetlands. In addition, citizens at workshops emphasized the need for better K-12, university and public education on all Great Lakes issues and suggested that education be added as a protection and restoration priority.
The Great Lakes form the north coast of the United States, consisting of more than 10,000 miles of shoreline, an amount roughly the same as the U.S. Atlantic Coast. These large lakes hold 20% of the world’s supply of surface fresh water and the surrounding states are home to 82 million U.S. citizens.