December 19, 2019

Duckworth Secures Big Wins to Support and Protect the Great Lakes


[WASHINGTON, D.C.] – This week, two provisions led by U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) to support the Great Lakes were included in the America’s Conservation Enhancement Act (ACE), which was voted out of the U.S. Senate Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee and will now be considered by the full Senate. Duckworth and is Ranking Member of the EPW Subcommittee on Fisheries, Water and Wildlife.

“The Great Lakes support 1.5 million jobs and provide drinking water to tens of millions of Americans and it’s our duty to keep them healthy and strong for decades to come,” said Senator Duckworth. “These provisions will make sure critical research needed to protect the Great Lakes can continue and the invasive species that threaten the environment and economy can be rooted out.”

The first provision Duckworth led provides $15 million for five years to help ensure assessments and monitoring of the Great Lakes, support the deployment of new technologies for better fishery management, and improve the multi-billion Great Lakes fishery. It was also included in the government funding bill that was passed in both chambers of Congress and is expected to be signed into law.

Duckworth’s second provision included in ACE will provide $2.5 million for five years in assistance for agencies across the federal government that have strategies to prevent invasive species from doing irreparable harm to our environment and economy.

As the top Democrat on the Senate Subcommittee on Fisheries, Water and Wildlife, Duckworth has been a strong advocate for protecting the Great Lakes from threats like toxic pollution, invasive species and President Trump’s budget cuts. She and U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) had several of their priorities included in the America’s Water Infrastructure Act of 2018, including improving federal cost sharing at Brandon Road Lock and Dam. Last year, Duckworth also introduced the Great Lakes Water Protection Act to improve water quality in the Great Lakes and create a dedicated fund to help clean up sewage in the Great Lakes.