Marquette Mining Journal : State files carp suit in Supreme Court (22 Dec 2009)
Chicago Tribune : Asian carp: Michigan asks Supreme Court to shut 2 corridors to Great Lakes (22 Dec 2009)
It’s worth having links to papers from both “sides” because I hadn’t yet heard of what Illinois officials were saying about this issue. It surely cannot be an inconsequential thing to undo the canal and break the link between Lake Michigan and the Mississippi River. Illinois’ governor Pat Quinn is quoted in the Tribune’s article saying “We have to protect the ecology of the Great Lakes; we also have many, many jobs that depend on shipping, so there has to be a proper balance.” Yet, it’s undeniable that the effects on the Great Lakes ecosystem and economy could be huge if the Asian carp do as well here as it has in more southerly waterways. “Thousands of jobs are at stake and we will not get a second chance once the carp enter Lake Michigan,” he is quoted as saying in the Mining Journal article.
This is the sort of thing that should require a considerable amount of research and thought to account for all the possible effects, not to just focus on the Asian carp, but on the economy and ecology of two huge regions. But the carp spreads so fast that even if the political will to deliberate were there, the time may not be.
Worth noting is that the Michigan attorney general leading the lawsuit, Mike Cox, is running for governor in 2010. So is Illinois governor Pat Quinn, to get his own term after filling the term started by Rod Blagojevich.
(P.S.: The Mining Journal, despite its size, seems to do a better job covering Great Lakes issues than at least the Detroit dailies, which is why I show it equally with the much more prestigious Chicago Tribune.)
Follow up to my previous post about Asian carp