Located between lakes Huron and Erie, Lake St. Clair is the smallest lake in the Great
Lakes system. Heart-shaped and shallow (averaging only 10 feet/3 meters deep), the lake
requires periodic dredging to ensure bottom clearance for large ships. The northeastern
portion of Lake St. Clair is an extensive delta system, the largest within the Great
Lakes. The Michigan portion of the delta has been urbanized, while Ontario has set aside
much of the wetlands as the Walpole Indian Reservation. Wetland loss from urban and
recreational encroachment continues to be a problem on the U.S. side; and in Ontario,
many of the wetland areas have been wiped out by agricultural drainage.
Comprehensive Management Plan
Lake St. Clair Beaches Focus of New Joint Project|
Contact: Robert McCann (517) 241-7397
Agency: Environmental Quality
August 8, 2005
The Department of Environmental Quality and the United States Geological Survey are collaborating
to identify sourcesof elevated E. coli concentrations in the water at the Macomb County Metro
Beach Metropark and St. Clair Shores Memorial Beachon Lake St. Clair. The 15-month study, funded
with $118,000 from DEQ and $51,000 from the USGS,will identify possible sources of E. coli and
determine the environmental factors that contribute to variations in E. coliconcentrations.
“In spite of aggressive efforts to correct illicit connections, failing septic systems, and to
prevent sewer system overflows, we continue to see E. coli levels that result in closing of local
beaches,” said Ken DeBeaussaert,Director of the Office of the Great Lakes and Lake St. Clair
Coordinator. “The ultimate goal of this work is to enable these beaches to remain open,while
ensuring that the public health is protected.”
The project could be the basis for developing a better predictive model for beach conditions.
The data will be used by the DEQ to help develop mitigation efforts by the state and local units
Memorial and Metropark beaches are routinely monitored for E. coli by the Macomb County Health
Department and both periodically exceed the water quality standards for E. coli, resulting in
beach closures. Results of E. coli monitoring for the Memorial and Metropark beaches, as well as
monitoring results and beach closure information for other Michigan beaches, can be found on the
DEQ’s Beach Water Monitoring Web site at: http://www.deq.state.mi.us/beach.
Editor’s note: DEQ news releases are available on the department’s Internet home page at www.michigan.gov/deq.
“Protecting Michigan’s Environment, Ensuring Michigan’s Future”
Revised August 8, 2005 by Pat Watson
MDOT to construct soundwall in St. Clair Shores
Contact: Brenda Peek 248-483-5109
What: A groundbreaking ceremony will be held to mark construction of the soundwall in St. Clair Shores, Macomb County.
Who: Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) officials, including Ted B. Wahby, State Transportation Commission chairman,
and Drew Buckner, Macomb County Transportation Service Center manager; Bob Hison, mayor of St. Clair Shores; and others
When: Friday, July 2910:30 to 11a.m.
Where: The ceremony will be held at the intersection of Wood Street and Stephens Road.
Directions: From I-94, exit onto 10 Mile Road. The first street east of I-94 is Wood Street. Turn right on Wood Street and travel approximately two blocks to Stephens Road. Parking is available on Wood Street.
Background: The soundwall will be located on I-94 eastbound from Stephens Road northerly to 10 Mile Road in the city of St. Clair Shores, Macomb County. This project will begin in early August and is expected to be completed by early November 2005.
The prime contractor for this $1.5 million project is E.C. Korneffel of Trenton, Mich.
MDOT: Celebrating 100 years of transportation innovation, 1905-2005
Groups unveil plan to protect Great Lakes
By Hugh McDiarmid Jr.
A Great Lakes water-protection plan more sweeping than Gov. Jennifer Granholm's proposed
Water Legacy Act wasunveiled Wednesday by a coalition of environmentalgroups.The plan,
like the Legacy Act, would require permits for large-scale withdrawals of Michigan
groundwater or surface water, but it would go further -- prohibitingmost private sales
of water from operations like Nestle Waters' Ice Mountain spring water bottling plant
near Big Rapids.
"It's converting a public resource to a private commodity," said Dave Dempsey, policy
adviser to the Michigan chapter of Clean Water Action. "It raises the specter that anyone
with access to groundwater" can sell it.
The proposal has no legislative sponsors, but lawmakers were briefed on it Wednesday
morning said James Clift, policy adviser for the Michigan EnvironmentalCouncil.
The plan and the Legacy Act are expected to be debated during the summer as
legislators wrangle with what, if any, steps to take to protect the state's water
A summary of the plan is available at www.cleanwateraction.org
Click on "state programs" and "Michigan."
St. Clair Shores: Storm drain results are in; announcement imminent
August 4, 2005
BY DAN CORTEZ
FREE PRESS STAFF WRITER
Word could be coming this week regarding the next step in the PCB investigation in St. Clair Shores.
Representatives from the Environmental Protection Agency have contacted city officials to inform them that test results are back from probing that was done two months ago near the 10 Mile storm drain.
At the end of May, the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality and the EPA used Geoprobes to pull soil samples from the drain. The samples came from soil 15 feet beneath the surface.
The probing was done after the highest concentrations of PCBs ever found in St. Clair Shores -- 200,000 parts per million -- were uncovered in February.
PCBs -- polychlorinated biphenyls -- are a chemical compound used in fire-retardant properties and industrial coolants until they were banned in 1977, when it was discovered they could cause cancer.
City Communications Director Mary Jane Winkler said the latest results are more likely to reveal where high concentrations of the chemicals are instead of what created the PCBs. The source of the PCBs remains unknown.
For several years, St. Clair Shores residents have been waiting for definitive answers as to what is polluting the 10 Mile storm drain and the 10 Mile Lange-Revere Canal with PCBs.
City and environmental officials have stressed throughout the past several years that the presence of PCBs hasn't jeopardized the health of residents.
Winkler said the EPA reported to the city that the results have been validated and that the federal agency is meeting internally to figure out what the results mean.
Afterward, the EPA will meet with state environmental officials and then city officials.
At that point, a public forum will be held to inform residents of the finding. The meetings are expected to take place within the next several weeks.
"We're kind of in a holding pattern right now," Winkler said. "Hopefully that pattern will break really soon."
Contact DAN CORTEZ at 586-469-1827 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Related informational links:
Protection Agency - PCB Homepage
& Answers On PCB Contamination
Lakes Fish Consumption Advisory
Clean Water Action Michigan
Great Lakes St. Lawrence Seaway Study
Memorandum 10 Mile Storm Drain (PDF)
Window To My Environment
Envirofacts Data Warehouse
Environmental Justice Geographic Assessment Tool
Environmental Law News
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