We are 100: Lake Huron is 100th member in the global network Living Lakes
The global lake network “Living Lakes“ coordinated by Global Nature Fund
(GNF) welcomes the 100th new member
August 2012: 14 years after its launch, the network “Living Lakes“ has grown to
102 members. Each lake is represented in the network through a local or
national nature conservation organization. The network was brought to life in
1998 by four founding members, Lake Constance in Central Europe, Lake Biwa in
Japan, Lake St. Lucia in South Africa and Mono Lake in California, USA. Since
then the worldwide partnership has grown continuously with new lakes and
members that joined the network on all continents.
new member, Lake Huron, is one of the five Great Lakes in North America,
situated between Canada and USA. Huron is the most important source of drinking
water for USA and Canada. The lake demonstrates that only international
agreements can ensure a proper protection of water bodies. Unfortunately,
Canada declared it’s withdrawal from the Kyoto-Protocol in December 2011. Since
then, a number of grass root initiatives started by citizens and NGOs evolved
striving for the protection of Canada’s precious water ecosystem.
the background of the obvious threats to lakes in Canada, the Canada based
environmental organizations Wildsight and Lake Winnipeg Foundation - both of
them are members in the Living Lakes network for many years now - have launched
the Living Lakes Canada Network. The aim of the partnership is to support
nature and conservation activities through the exchange of experiences and
expertise and global cooperation. The network has grown to eighth active
members fighting for the protection of the fresh water resources in Canada.
Lakes such as Huron, Winnipeg and Ontario as well as important rivers and their
catchments such as Skeena, Athabasca and Columbia are members in the network.
support for lakes is needed. One example are the dramatic environmental
problems in the catchment of the Athabasca in the province Alberta, a region
well known for the massive extraction of oil sands with a high demand of water
and energy. Environmental standards are in jeopardy here. The destruction
caused by the oil sand industry threatens natural ecosystems such as lakes,
rivers, peatlands and boreal forests at and alarming scale.
change effects and nutrient enrichment are the main reasons for the ecological
problems at Lake Winnipeg. Against the background of the dramatic algae growth
at the world’s 10th largest lake, Canadian environmentalists demand
for immediate and effective action.
is of utmost importance that Canadians be engaged in the protection of lakes
and wetlands, especially in light of recent changes made by our federal
government to the environmental legislation that once protected freshwater
ecosystems in Canada", says Heather Leschied, Wildsight staff and
spokesperson of Living Lakes Canada. A good example for the effective international
collaboration is a global campaign that Living Lakes Canada started a couple of
months ago. The Harper government announced to shut down the research institute
ELA (Experimental Lakes Area). This would result in a significant loss of
regional and national knowledge on nature and environment related issues.
Within a few weeks, hundreds of mails and letters have been sent to harper
underlining that Canada’s good environmental reputation is at risk.
“That Lake Huron
joined the network Living Lakes as the hundredth member does not only make us
proud. It also demonstrates that the protection of lakes and wetlands has
eventually achieved a global awareness reflecting the importance these valuable
water ecosystems play for the survival of millions of people as well as the
protection of endangered species“, Jörg Dürr-Pucher, member of the GNF Board of
Directors, summarizes the achievements of the network.
Since its launch,
the network is being supported by various private sector companies, amongst
them Daimler, Karcher and Osram as well as Ministries and the European Union.
Further information on the member lakes and the various national Living Lakes
networks can be found at: www.globalnature.org/english/
Global Nature Fund (GNF)
78315 Radolfzell, Germany
Phone: +49 - (0) 77 32 - 99 95 - 0
Telefax: +49 - (0) 77 32 - 99 95 - 88
Web page: www.globalnature.org