Last week, a fisherman caught a live Asian Carp in waterways nine miles away from the entrance to Lake Michigan in Illinois. While that may sound like a good distance away, the large fish was found beyond electric barriers meant to keep the invasive species far away from the Great Lakes. The carp have been slowly but surely working their way closer to Lake Michigan. This has left many ecologists and lawmakers worried that the introduction of the species into the Great Lakes system would devastate a multi-billion dollar economy surrounding fishing and recreation. And many officials are frustrated with inaction at the federal level to create an impenetrable barrier between the carp and the Great Lakes.
State Sen. John Proos (R-St. Joseph) joins Detroit Today host Stephen Henderson to discuss the devastating effects Asian Carp could have on the lakes.
“Asian carp… is an altogether more dangerous invasive species because of what it can do to the entire ecosystem. It has such a voracious appetite and no natural predators,” Proos says.
Proos also discusses President Trump’s budget, which slashes funding for Great Lakes restoration projects.
“This is not a partisan issue, it is an environmental issue,” Proos says. “It’s a slow motion disaster that we’re allowing to happen right before our eyes.”
Proos also discusses how the budget could affect the Army Corps of Engineers which has the responsibility for the management of the lock system in the Chicago River.
“That’s where we really want to see the effect immediately to try to stop the Asian Carp from reaching the Great Lakes where my Southwest Michigan District would be the first place to see that impact”
Click the audio player above to hear the whole conversation.