PAGE 9 MAZINA’IGAN FALL 2017 • GREAT LAKES • Great lakes, treaty resources enhanced under GLRI By Jennifer Ballinger, GLIFWC Outreach Specialist The Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI) was first funded in 2010. Its purpose is to provide additional support to federal, state, and tribal agencies and other entities to accelerate efforts to protect and restore the Great Lakes. After an initial infusion of $475 million in 2010, it has consistently been funded at approximately $300 million. The GLRI also allowed unprecedented coordination among federal, state, and tribal agencies and other entities, allowing for more efficient work addressing Areas of Concern (AOCs), invasive species, contaminants, nearshore health and nonpoint pollution, and habitat/wildlife protection and restoration. The additional resources and coordination provided by the GLRI has allowed for expedited Great Lakes restoration. For example, 31Areas of Concern (AOCs) were designated in the early 1970s in the Great Lakes basin. In 2010 when GLRI began, only oneAOC had been delisted, Oswego River (NY) in 2006. Since 2010, three additional AOCs have been delisted, White Lake (Michigan) 2014, Deer Lake (Mich.) 2014, and Presque Isle Bay (Pennsylvania) 2013. Increased coordination has also enabled activities geared towards ongoing restoration and protection of the Great Lakes, including current work by GLIFWC, Fond du Lac, and other agencies to delist the St. Louis River AOC (Minnesota/ Wisconsin). Capacity funding through the GLRI has helped provide tribes and intertribal agencies the resources for both involvement in restoration and protection manage- ment decisions; provide sound science necessary for land development proposal analyses; and forge interjurisdictional relationships vital to protecting traditional resources throughout the Great Lakes basin. GLIFWC’s GLRI funded activities: • Increased capacity with additional staff and participation in Great Lakes Initiatives such as Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement Annex Subcom- mittees, Great Lakes Executive Committee, Great Lakes Advisory Board • Tracking Contaminants in Fish • Safe Fish Consumption Advice • Manoomin Restoration & Protection Safety training focuses on Great Lakes emergencies By Bill Mattes, GLIFWC Great Lakes Section Leader Red Cliff, Wis.—On a cool and blustery day in July, eleven fishy folks gathered on the shores of Gichigami to undergo instruction on how to prepare a vessel and its crew for emergencies on the water. Instructors Ron Kinnunen and Titus Seilheimer from the respective Michigan Sea Grant andWisconsin Sea Grant programs were on hand to educate, demonstrate and oversee the use of safety gear andcertifyparticipantsasU.S.CoastGuardFishingVesselDrillConductorsthrough theAMSEAtraining program (Alaska Marine Safety and EducationAssociation). Throughout the day, participants were shown real-life incidences, and trained on the importance of both being individually prepared and having a fully prepared crew to respond to on-water emergencies. This was the fourth in a series of free training sessions for tribal fishermen set up with the support of the Michigan and Wisconsin Sea Grant programs along with GLIFWC. During the ten-hour long course participants donned cold water survival suits (in under one-minute), put out fires, made proper Mayday calls, deployed an emergency raft, and followed abandon ship procedures. In total, seven tribal commercial fishermen and four tribal personnel trained to beat the odds when an on-water emergency arises. For more see www.amsea.org. Tribes have been instrumental in the implementation of the GLRI, with over 30 tribes and intertribal agencies located in the Great Lakes region. Their reserva- tions and Ceded Territories cover extensive portions of the basin. GLRIfundedprojectsrelatedtohabitatandwildliferestorationandprotection and preservation and enhancement of the environment in which tribal members exercise their treaty-reserved hunting, fishing, and gathering rights. GLRI capacity funding has also allowed increased participation in intergov- ernmental initiatives while providing the unique tribal perspective in management activities. For example, between 2010 and 2014, tribes restored and enhanced over 124,000 acres of wetlands, prairie grasslands, and upland habitat as well as an additional 15,000 acres of manoomin (wild rice) beds. GLRI has been an important asset to GLIFWC and its member tribes. Contin- ued funding is essential to tribes’restoration and protection efforts for the natural resources essential for the Anishinaabe bimaadiziwin (lifeway). Anishinaabe culture depends on continuing and enhancing subsistence harvesting practices. There are many threats to these resources, such as pollution, climate change, and invasive species. The GLRI enhanced the tribes’ commitment to work with other managers in the Ceded Territories to protect and restore natural resources and habitats, and will continue to do so. Emergency management participants learned how to most effectively use fire extinguishers during Fishing Vessel Drill Conductor training at Bay Mills, Michigan. (J. Thannum photo) Hollow Rock, a unique natural arch formation along Lake Superior on the Grand Portage reservation. (J. Ballinger photo) Every summer around the third Sunday in July, people around Gichigami celebrate Lake Superior Day. On the south shore of the big lake, the Bad River Tribe’s Natural Resources Department hosted their annual Lake Superior Day event on July 14. With a host of displays and activities, the department helped raise community awareness about the threats facing the Lake Superior ecosystem. Photo: John Prohaska, Brownsfield Specialist for the Bad River Natural Resources Department explains environmental issues associated with pipelines to a young tribal member. (C. Rasmussen photo) Lake Superior Day