Alliance for the Great Lakes • Natural Resources Defense Council
Prairie Rivers Network • Sierra Club, Illinois Chapter
Chicago, IL (August 7, 2017) – After much delay, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers today released the Brandon Road Lock & Dam Study. The study provides critical new information on the options for implementing additional Asian carp control measures to slow the movement of the invasive fish. Environmental and conservation groups released the following statement in response:
“The recent finding of an adult Asian carp nine miles from Lake Michigan underscores the urgent nature of this threat to Lake Michigan and all of the Great Lakes. The study, which was completed months ago, should have been released in February yet the Administration sat on it in reaction to pressure from industry groups and officials from the states of Illinois and Indiana. This delay wasted valuable time, putting the Great Lakes at unnecessary risk.
“We look forward to reviewing the findings in detail and to continuing the conversation on this critical issue with elected officials and concerned citizens during the public comment period. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers must listen carefully to public input on the study and then move quickly from study to implementation of additional protection measures at the Brandon Road Lock and Dam, a logical choke point in the system.
“While possible control measures at Brandon Road Lock and Dam represent another step in the fight against the upstream movement of Asian carp, we cannot lose focus on the need for a two-way solution that also addresses invasive species moving from the Great Lakes into the Mississippi River basin.
“Thank you to the many Congressional Great Lakes champions who have advocated for the release of this study. Continued effort by elected officials will be needed to ensure the process is not delayed further and funding is appropriated for future construction needs.”
Alliance for the Great Lakes: Jennifer Caddick, (312) 445-9760
Natural Resources Defense Council: Ivan Moreno, (312) 651-7932
Prairie Rivers Network: Robert Hirschfeld, (217) 344-2371 x8205
Sierra Club, Illinois Chapter: Cindy Skrukrud, (312) 251-1680 x110
The Brandon Road Draft Integrated Feasibility Study and Environmental Impact Statement is available for review at the Great Lakes and Mississippi River Interbasin Study (GLMRIS) site.
Comments will be accepted through October 2, 2017. They can be submitted online or mailed or delivered to:
US Army Corps of Engineers, Chicago District
231 S. LaSalle St. Suite 1500
ATTN: GLMRIS – Brandon Road Comments
Chicago, IL 60604
The Corps will hold a series of public meetings in order to open a dialogue and obtain feedback. Scheduled meetings are:
- September 11, 2017 from 1 to 5 p.m. at James R Thompson Center, 100 W Randolph St., Chicago, Illinois
- September 14 from 3:30 to 6:30 p.m. at Muskegon Community College, Collegiate Hall, 221 S. Quarterline Road, Muskegon, Michigan
- September 18 from 3:30 – 6:30 p.m. at Joliet Junior College, “U” Conference Center, 1215 Houbolt Road, Joliet, Illinois
During the meetings, the Corps will provide a presentation on the tentatively selected plan that includes structural and nonstructural options and technologies for preventing upstream transfer of aquatic nuisance species, such as Asian carp, at Brandon Road Lock and Dam on the Des Plaines River. Oral and written comments will be accepted at the meetings. A webinar and Facebook Live format will be provided for the September 14 and 18 meetings. Meeting details will be posted at the GLMRIS Public Meetings page.