The DEQ awards several grants to protect Michigan’s Great Lakes coastal wetlands

The state on Monday, August 7th, announced more than $700,000 in grants aimed at supporting coastal projects across Michigan.coastal-wetland-tobico_marsh

Central Michigan University received the largest single amount at $100,000.

Five years ago CMU received a $10 million grant to study the entire Great Lakes coastal region.

The information collected over those last five years will now be used to determine where restoration work should take place.

Dr. Don Uzarski is a CMU professor and Director of Institute for Great Lakes Research and CMU’s Biological station.

“We’ve already lost 50% of Great Lakes Coastal wetlands across the entire Great Lakes basin. So where do we start, where do we start for restoration? That’s what I mean, we can use the data to decide where are we going to be most efficient spending money for these system” says Uzarski.

Other groups that received funding include the Northwest and Northeast Michigan Council of Governments, and the Heart of the Lakes organization out of Bay City.

“What this will do were using data to make informed decision, so were essentially getting the biggest boom for the buck. We can restore systems haphazardly, but that’s not a wise use of resources. So were really driving these decisions based on the data” says Uzarski.

Uzarski also says the information will be used to determine where restoration work on the Great Lake coastal wetlands should begin, and where.