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Tue Feb 5, 2013, 09:49 PM

 

2 Great Lakes hit lowest water level on record

Source: NBC News

Two of the Great Lakes have hit their lowest water levels ever recorded, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers said Tuesday, capping more than a decade of below-normal rain and snowfall and higher temperatures that boost evaporation.

Measurements taken last month show Lake Huron and Lake Michigan have reached their lowest ebb since record keeping began in 1918, and the lakes could set additional records over the next few months, the corps said. The lakes were 29 inches below their long-term average and had declined 17 inches since January 2012.

The other Great Lakes Superior, Erie and Ontario were also well below average...


Read more: http://usnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/02/05/16858495-2-great-lakes-hit-lowest-water-level-on-record?lite

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Arrow 27 replies Author Time Post
Reply 2 Great Lakes hit lowest water level on record (Original post)
michigandem58 Feb 2013 OP
Adsos Letter Feb 2013 #1
truthisfreedom Feb 2013 #5
waddirum Feb 2013 #27
blackspade Feb 2013 #2
Nihil Feb 2013 #12
blackspade Feb 2013 #14
dipsydoodle Feb 2013 #13
blackspade Feb 2013 #15
Jarhead1775 Feb 2013 #3
abelenkpe Feb 2013 #26
cstanleytech Feb 2013 #4
Moostache Feb 2013 #6
DeSwiss Feb 2013 #9
Myrina Feb 2013 #23
Jarhead1775 Feb 2013 #7
amandabeech Feb 2013 #8
lovuian Feb 2013 #10
Bay Boy Feb 2013 #16
Earth_First Feb 2013 #17
Bay Boy Feb 2013 #21
judesedit Feb 2013 #11
lovuian Feb 2013 #19
Bay Boy Feb 2013 #22
AngryAmish Feb 2013 #18
Bay Boy Feb 2013 #20
Crepuscular Feb 2013 #25
TrogL Feb 2013 #24

Response to michigandem58 (Original post)

Tue Feb 5, 2013, 09:57 PM

1. Wow. 29" across bodies of water of that size?

That sounds like a lot of water.

Edit: Then there's this:

But studies have shown that Huron and Michigan fell by 10 to 16 inches because of dredging over the years to deepen the navigational channel in the St. Clair River, most recently in the 1960s. Dredging of the river, which is on the south end of Lake Huron, accelerated the flow of water southward from the two lakes toward Lake Erie and Lake Ontario, and eventually into the Atlantic Ocean.


...whoops...

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Response to Adsos Letter (Reply #1)

Tue Feb 5, 2013, 10:23 PM

5. So what's the solution now? Lock and dams?

Gated channels?

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Response to truthisfreedom (Reply #5)

Thu Feb 7, 2013, 01:02 AM

27. the Great Lakes already are lock'd and dam'd pretty extensively

The Soo Locks and the Welland Canal are two such features.

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Response to michigandem58 (Original post)

Tue Feb 5, 2013, 10:12 PM

2. Geological rebound is a factor as well.

The entire Great Lakes basin has risen continually since the late Wisconsin glaciation.

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Response to blackspade (Reply #2)

Wed Feb 6, 2013, 08:21 AM

12. Umm ... really?

> Geological rebound is a factor as well.
> The entire Great Lakes basin has risen continually since the late Wisconsin glaciation.

Care to suggest how the bottom of the those lakes has managed to rebound 17" more
than the banks surrounding them over the last year?

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Response to Nihil (Reply #12)

Wed Feb 6, 2013, 10:39 AM

14. I said, 'a factor'

I was merely pointing out that there are geological processes that are at play in addition to man-made problems.
The geologic processes are compounded by the damage that we have done to the lake's flow rates and the damage we have done to the climate.

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Response to blackspade (Reply #2)

Wed Feb 6, 2013, 08:36 AM

13. Once upon a time

they didn't even exist.

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Response to dipsydoodle (Reply #13)

Wed Feb 6, 2013, 10:39 AM

15. indeed.

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Response to michigandem58 (Original post)

Tue Feb 5, 2013, 10:20 PM

3. Underwater forest

While the depth is getting lower, I was diving Lake Michigan a few years ago, and at abou 40' depth I found an underwater forest. Pretty wild to see all the tree stumps still rooted in at that depth.

They have found similar anomalies in other areas of the lakes. See link below.

http://www.mackinacislandnews.com/news/2009-07-18/Top_News/Divers_Discover_Drowned_Forest_That_Will_Aid_in_Ma.html

It was lower thousands of years ago, about 6,700 years ago.

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Response to Jarhead1775 (Reply #3)

Wed Feb 6, 2013, 11:14 PM

26. Whoa. That is cool! Nt

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Response to michigandem58 (Original post)

Tue Feb 5, 2013, 10:22 PM

4. How much if any of that is due to rebounding the earth is doing since the glaciers

have retreated?

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Response to michigandem58 (Original post)

Tue Feb 5, 2013, 10:31 PM

6. I grew up on the southern shores of Lake Michigan...

The place is dearer to me than anything outside of my immediate family.

It is where I learned to swim, fish, boat, water ski, ice skate and cross country ski.
It is where I spent thousands of hours swimming and playing on the sandy beaches, yet when I was last home to visit my parents, the site of the lake shore extending for at least 100 yards more than it used to was jarring...

It breaks my heart and hurts my soul to rad these kind of reports...just as the Zebra Mollusk infestation did the same ...

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Response to Moostache (Reply #6)

Tue Feb 5, 2013, 11:50 PM

9. We'll need to eat more Asian Carp too:

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Response to Moostache (Reply #6)

Wed Feb 6, 2013, 03:50 PM

23. Same here ... 'cept I'm from Northcentral WI

... the lakeshore was never more than 30 minutes away and many a weekend during summer - like homing pigeons - my family, aunts/uncles/cousins, grandparents, and now siblings with their kids & grandkids head to the beaches.

One Sunday, as it turned out, 5 of my 6 siblings and their families & I were all there at the same time, picnicing at different spots. 2 of my nieces were walking along the beach & managed to spot all of us and rounded us up. LOL!

So sad.

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Response to michigandem58 (Original post)

Tue Feb 5, 2013, 10:43 PM

7. Chicago

The Chicago river used to flow into Lake Michigan. They reversed the flow in the late 1800's. if they would just block the connection it would help, along with keeping the Asian carp out of the Great Lakes. I believe every state on the great lakes and Canada has pushed to chut the Chicago river down to block Asian carp, with only Illinois opposing.

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Response to michigandem58 (Original post)

Tue Feb 5, 2013, 10:45 PM

8. There are quite a few active harbors around the upper Lakes.

Limestone, gravel, architectural stone, iron ore and coal move all over the Lakes, and the value to the U.S. states and Canadian provinces is quite high.

Transportation by water is very fuel efficient, and I think that encouraging the use of the Great Lakes as a natural highway will continue to be beneficial. The traffic among the Lakes is probably more important than the traffic coming in through the St. Lawrence Seaway and it does not bring in unwanted foreign species.
.
The U.S. would not be shouldering the entire cost of raising the water level in Lakes Michigan and Huron. It would be split with Canada, which is in good shape.

I should think that the U.S. contribution would amount to less than the price of a couple of wretched, screwed up F-35 aircraft.

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Response to michigandem58 (Original post)

Wed Feb 6, 2013, 01:00 AM

10. Are we still sending millions of gallons to China?

I was wondering?

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Response to lovuian (Reply #10)

Wed Feb 6, 2013, 11:45 AM

16. How do they do that?

It's not a pipeline that's for sure.

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Response to Bay Boy (Reply #16)

Wed Feb 6, 2013, 12:35 PM

17. Ballast water...

It's probably not a huge factor in lake levels; however in the invasive species department, it is HUGE.

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Response to Earth_First (Reply #17)

Wed Feb 6, 2013, 03:02 PM

21. Was that in response to my question about

how the water is getting to China?

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Response to michigandem58 (Original post)

Wed Feb 6, 2013, 02:17 AM

11. You forgot to mention Nestle is sucking up the water there to send to China. Has been for years.

Now you notice.

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Response to judesedit (Reply #11)

Wed Feb 6, 2013, 12:43 PM

19. yep finally we notice and it still hasn't stopped

I guess when it is dry then we will notice

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Response to judesedit (Reply #11)

Wed Feb 6, 2013, 03:04 PM

22. Nestle is pulling the water from

underground aren't they? Would that have much of an affect on the water levels of the Great Lakes?

And are you being serious that they then send it to China? That would seem to be cost prohibitive.

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Response to michigandem58 (Original post)

Wed Feb 6, 2013, 12:42 PM

18. When I was a young man there were stories about the records high water levels in Lake Michigan

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Response to AngryAmish (Reply #18)

Wed Feb 6, 2013, 03:01 PM

20. I recall the high water levels of 1986

...I wasn't a young man, but I was younger.

The water was lapping at our seawall on a calm day. Storms would push waves past our house and into the road, that was not good either.

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Response to AngryAmish (Reply #18)

Wed Feb 6, 2013, 10:27 PM

25. It's cyclical

It's cyclical to a degree, though. I grew up on a bay located on Lake Michigan and can remember when water levels were almost as low as they are now (during the 1960's) and then periods when there was no beach (usually about 50 feet wide) and the water came all the way up to the treeline. For a while we had a pond in our backyard, the water was so high. Now it's probably 100 feet from the treeline to the water. So the current low levels are not some freak occurrence.

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Response to michigandem58 (Original post)

Wed Feb 6, 2013, 06:10 PM

24. That's eventually going to affect power transmission at Niagara Falls

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