Report: Great Lakes cleanups boost economic development

Associated Press

Ann Arbor – A new report says cleaning up some of the Great Lakes region’s most heavily polluted areas has led to billions of dollars’ worth of economic development and brought communities closer together.

The study released Tuesday was conducted by the International Association for Great Lakes Research in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

Machinery removing turbidity controls at the Black Lagoon Sediment Clean-Up Project in Trenton in 2005. The cleanup was the first in the United States under the federal Great Lakes Legacy Act of 2003.

It reviews efforts to restore harbors, river mouths and other spots that were contaminated with toxic wastes during the industrial boom era.

The U.S. and Canada identified 43 such “areas of concern” in the 1980s. Work remains to be done on most of them.

The report highlights 10 places where cleanups have spurred development.

Among them are the Buffalo River in New York, the Cuyahoga River in Cleveland, the Detroit River in Michigan and Toronto’s Lake Ontario waterfront area.