WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) applauded the release of the Brandon Road Lock and Dam study, which provides critical guidance on how to prevent Asian carp from entering the Great Lakes.
“We are now one step closer to taking action to protect our Great Lakes from Asian carp, and I look forward to working with Senator Portman and my other Great Lakes colleagues to turn this report into concrete actions that will benefit our Lakes,” said Brown. “Protecting the Lakes from Asian carp is about protecting Ohio jobs that rely on Lake Erie. I hope the Administration appreciates the severity of this threat, and will join our efforts to restore funding to the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative.”
Asian carp represent a serious economic and environmental threat to the Great Lakes, and this report is a critical next step in finding and implementing a solution. The report had been delayed by the Trump Administration from its expected release in February of this year. Now that the report is released, a public comment period can begin, and further action can be decided in an open and transparent way. Earlier this year, Brown introduced the Stop Asian Carp Now Act, a bill calling for the immediate release of the Brandon Road study following the bill’s enactment.
In 2015, Brown supported the Defending Our Great Lakes Act, to encourage the implementation of more water quality and flood mitigation projects as part of Asian carp prevention efforts. The legislation sought collaboration between the Great Lakes Interagency Task Force (IATF) – a collection of 11 U.S. Cabinet and federal agency heads, led by the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) – and state and local flood and water quality agencies, to ensure the implementation of more of these projects.
In May, Brown blasted President Trump’s budget for eliminating the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI), a highly successful program that jumpstarted efforts to protect, maintain and restore the integrity of the Great Lakes. The budget also reduces funding for agricultural conservation programs and eliminates the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Sea Grant Program, which funds Ohio State Stone Lab on Lake Erie. Stone Lab plays a critical role in monitoring and protecting Lake Erie.
Last Congress, Brown cosponsored the Great Lakes Ecological and Economic Protection Act of 2015 (GLEEPA) – a bill that would reauthorize the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative and codify the program into statute. In December, Brown successfully fought to include authorization for GLRI in the Senate water bill.