DEQ Great Lakes Office is celebrating 30 years with its latest State of the Great Lakes report


A report released this week touches on future plans for the Great Lakes, and past work to maintain the quality of the lakes.

The report is released annually by the Department of Environmental Quality. This year is its 30th year.

Stephanie Swart is with the DEQ Great Lakes Office.

“I think it’s really interesting to look back 30 years at the creation of the office and the see what other people did and see that in some ways we’re still looking at the same problems, just maybe from a different viewpoint.”

Swart says the report discusses ongoing partnerships with Michigan’s native tribes and development of coastal water trails as successful programs. It says water-related tourism is one of the highest revenue generators in Michigan’s tourism industry.

Swart said one of the main goals for this year is to partner with local environmentalists.

“So we’re doing a lot of work in our office to say those are the people we want to work with on a regular basis, those are the people we want to partner with. because we recognize that we have some abilities we can brigj the table as well as they do themselves.”

Swart said the report outlines new initiatives on the great lakes, including a beach monitoring system and partnerships with local indian tribes for watershed conservation.