Monday, June 28, 2010
Jun 28: A group of 11 Senators sent a letter urging President Obama to name a Federal Coordinated Response Commander responsible for organizing efforts to contain the spread of Asian carp. Senators Sherrod Brown (D-OH), George V. Voinovich (R-OH), Carl Levin (D-MI), Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Russ Feingold (D-WI), Herb Kohl (D-WI), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Al Franken (D-MN), Richard Lugar (R-IN), Charles Schumer (D-NY) and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) signed the June 25, letter. On June 23, the Asian Carp Regional Coordinating Committee (RCC) announced that one Bighead Asian carp had been found in Lake Calumet along the Chicago Area Waterway System (CAWS) -- the first physical specimen found in the CAWS above the U.S. Army Corps of Engineer's Electric Barrier System [See WIMS 6/24/10].
The Senators said, "The Great Lakes are a national treasure, a significant economic resource and an invaluable recreational ecosystem. The Asian carp have the potential to debilitate a multi-billion dollar fishing industry and significantly impart the tourism industry. That is why we are calling on you to immediately appoint a Coordinated Response Commander for Asian carp to fight this battle. . . we write to you with a renewed sense of urgency, asking you to name a federal Coordinated Response Commander for Asian carp who can effectively marshal and organize these efforts to contain the spread of the carp. . .
"State and federal officials have worked together since 2003 to develop containment strategies, including construction of electric barriers in the waterway designed to prevent the fish from reaching Lake Michigan and the other Great Lakes. Now a Bighead Asian Carp has been taken from the waterway on the wrong side of the electric barrier. Scientists tell us that once Asian carp are established in the Great Lakes, significant environmental deterioration is unavoidable. . .
"Preventing the Asian carp from entering Lake Michigan should be a national priority. We need the best and the brightest -- scientists, engineers, and environmental experts -- focused on this single goal. That is why we are calling on you to immediately appoint a Coordinated Response Commander for Asian carp to fight this battle. We need someone with the knowledge and skills to direct and coordinate multiple federal, state and private sector efforts. . ."
Access a release from Senator Brown including the letter (click here).
Posted by JPMcJ at 6/28/2010