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EPA Outlines Restoration Plan For Overstressed Great Lakes

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U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Lisa Jackson fleshed out details of the administration’s five-year, $2.2-billion Great Lakes Restoration Initiative Action plan at a Feb. 21 news conference at the National Governors’ Association’s winter meeting in Washington. The plan, which covers fiscal years 2010-2014, was developed by 16 federal agencies. It calls for cleaning up some of the most heavily polluted hot spots, including remediation of 9.4 million cubic yards of contaminated sediment; restoring wetlands and other habitats; establishing total maximum daily loads for phosphorus; and taking steps to keep invasive species such as Asian carp out of the lakes. President Obama requested $475 million in the fiscal 2010 budget and has requested $300 million for fiscal 2011 for the effort. Amounts for fiscal 2011 through 2014 need Congressional approval.

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