Lt. Gov. Sanguinetti opposing new Asian carp migration plan

Lt. Gov. Sanguinetti opposing new Asian carp migration plan

Lt. Gov. Sanguinetti opposing new Asian carp migration plan

The Army Corps of Engineers plans to spend $275 million on new technology to try and keep invasive Asian carp species out of Lake Michigan. It suggests constructing an electric dispersal barrier to repel and stun fish that get through the other barrier. In April, Durbin and other Senators from the Great Lakes region wrote to President Trump and Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Director Mick Mulvaney requesting the Administration release the Army Corps draft proposal to prevent Asian carp from reaching and severely harming the Great Lakes after the White House made a decision to delay and potentially modify this report. An underwater electric fence built back in 2002 to keep the fish out of the Great Lakes didn't stop their numbers from increasing. Studies have shown that is a weakness of the existing downstream electric barriers.

In June, a live Asian carp was discovered nine miles from Lake Michigan - beyond the electric barrier. The public can comment on its recommendations until September 21 at the website.

In April, Senator Baldwin sent a letter to President Trump urging for the report to be issued immediately. A new report from the U.S. Corps of Army Engineers released Monday recommends new security measures.

The tentative plan in a long-awaited study released Monday outlines five other options - ranging from no action, and therefore no cost, to a $5.9 million lock closure with a $318.7 million hit to navigation.

Molly Flanagan of the environmental group, the Alliance for the Great Lakes, said it appears the recommendations haven't been weakened.

Under the preferred alternative, silver and bighead carp have a 13% probability of establishment in the lakes, versus 29% with no action and 2% with a lock closure.

The Army Corps delayed releasing the report in February after Illinois Lieutenant Gov. Evelyn Sanguinetti and shipping industry groups voiced concern about high costs and potential difficulties to shipping lanes.

The Army Corps next collects public comments for 45 days and then begins a feasibility study, followed by reviews by the agency and state and a Chief of Engineers report, expected by August 2019.

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