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It’s Official: Michigan is Better than Ohio.

Just kidding. But one of the most interesting results from a polling project that our sister organization, the Michigan League of Conservation Voters Education Fund just wrapped up shows that Michiganders understand the importance of protecting our Great Lakes better than our neighbors in Ohio. 

95% of Michigan residents feel it is “very important to protect the Great Lakes,” while only 83% of Ohio residents said the same.

Clearly, Michiganders like you get it. The Great Lakes are truly the lifeblood of our region and it is up to all of us to protect this critically important resource for the good of our children and grandchildren.

The bad news is that there are serious problems brewing in our lakes—especially in Lake Erie.

Lake Erie, as the shallowest, is often seen as the canary in the coal mine of the Great Lakes. The problems affecting Lake Erie today can predict future problems for the other four.

And there is no denying that Lake Erie is sick.

Without serious action, our Great Lakes are in trouble.

In 2014 a toxic algae bloom poisoned the drinking water of more than 400,000 people in Toledo, Ohio–making it unsafe to drink or even touch.

In 2015, Lake Erie was afflicted by the largest algal bloom ever recorded. It’s time to take action for our lakes and clean water.

What’s causing this chronic problem?

The leading cause of harmful algal blooms is runoff pollution from farms.

Runoff pollution happens when rain and snowmelt wash fertilizers and manure off of farm fields and into streams and rivers. The polluted streams then carry the nutrient-rich fertilizers and manure downstream to Lake Erie where they cause explosive growth of algae.

Fortunately, there are farming practices that we know can help slow the flow of runoff pollution into our waterways.

That’s why we’re working with nontraditional partners—including farmers and city leaders to create a long-term strategy to protect our drinking water.

It’s going to take all of us buckling down to solve this problem. Michiganders are up to the task. We are so proud to stand with you!

Quick Facts:

-1 in 5 Michigan jobs is dependent on the state’s clean water sources. Our fishing industry makes up $4B of our state’s economy and our tourism industry makes up $7B.

-Following a bloom of toxic algae on Lake Erie, more than 400,000 people could not touch or consume their tap-water from Toledo, Ohio to Monroe, Michigan for two days in August of 2014.

-The Great Lakes provide drinking water to 40 million people, 11 million of whom depend on Lake Erie.