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Great Lakes

Great Lakes Commons Gathering

on Fri, 10/05/2012 - 21:32

From the Great Lakes Commons Gathering, October 2012, the following is a compelling Brief for the motivations for this Great Lakes Commons process and the hopes for what it might achieve.  As a commons activist, after reading this Brief, i realized that this could become another example of very few multi-border regional commons processes that are attempting to break through to regional co-governance by commoners, where communities of people are claiming the power to affect the policy for their regional commons directly.

Mapping and visualising commons. Great Lakes Commons map

on Thu, 06/07/2012 - 11:45

A recently launched Great Lakes Commons map helps bring further the understanding of what commons are and how they relate to our daily life. Below is an account of the exciting possibilities opened up by tools like this.

The Great Lakes Overview

on Wed, 04/13/2011 - 02:23

This is a briefing document on Great Lakes (General Facts, Environmental Challenges, Economic Impact, Water Use, Governance, Structures for Commons)

America’s North Coast: A Benefit-Cost Analysis of a Program to Protect and Restore the Great Lakes

on Wed, 04/13/2011 - 01:55

This study answers the question: what are healthy Great Lakes worth to the regional and national economies? If the nation and region invest in Great Lakes ecosystem restoration as the EPA-led task force recommends, what will be the economic return on that investment? The findings of this study conclude that restoration will provide economic benefits to both the region and the nation that substantially exceed the costs.

Restoring the Trust: Water Resources and the Public Trust Doctrine, A Manual for Advocates

on Wed, 04/13/2011 - 01:54

The public trust doctrine holds that certain natural resources belong to all and cannot be privately owned or controlled because of their inherent importance to each individual and society as a whole. A clear declaration of public ownership, the doctrine reaffirms the superiority of public rights over private rights for critical resources.


on Wed, 04/13/2011 - 01:52

The Great Lakes region, too long tagged with the misleading nickname, The Rust Belt, could show the rest of the country the way forward to the next economy. Although battered by decades of declining economic health, and particularly by the recession, the nation’s heartland still has many of the fundamental resources—top-ranked universities, companies with deep experience in global trade, and emerging centers of clean energy research to name just a few—necessary to create a better, more sustainable, economic model.


on Wed, 04/13/2011 - 01:50

Under the Compact, the eight Great Lakes states agree to adopt water-conservation plans and to abide by Compact rules for allowing and managing diversions of Great Lakes water. The Compact recognizes the lakes as a shared resource which no single state owns, but of which all states are stewards. As such, a defining feature of the Compact is its emphasis on using regional cooperation to manage the lakes as a single ecosystem.

Lake Michigan Oil and Gas Drilling: Worth the Risk?

on Wed, 04/13/2011 - 01:49

Drilling under Lake Michigan is a venture that has serious implications for the overall health and use of the take by its communities. The Lake Michigan Federation has prepared this report to help citizens understand the public, environmental and economic issues related to oil and gas drilling under Lake Michigan and offer recommendations to safeguard the lake.


on Wed, 04/13/2011 - 01:47

Do we push for the enactment of the 2005 Compact in its present form, or do we pause and consider whether this Compact meets, exceeds, or falls short of the vision to protect the life-enduring qualities of the waters, the sustenance for life, communities, the environment, human endeavor, and commerce in the Basin?

Trends in Water Privatization (Report)

on Wed, 04/13/2011 - 01:46

Confronted with daunting budget shortfalls following the recent economic downturn, various cities and towns across the country have considered cashing out their water utilities to generate revenue. But rather than ease fiscal pressures, the sale or lease of water assets would likely further weaken a locality’s long-term financial health and saddle consumers with debt.Many communities have saved money with public operation.