WHAT IS The Great Lakes Compact?

The Great Lakes are a national treasure.  As the world’s largest freshwater ecosystem, it is the source of water for 40 million people around the Great Lakes basin. We must protect this natural resource for future generations.

In 2008, the Great Lakes Compact was enacted as a federal law protecting the Great Lakes as a vital economic and cultural resource. The Compact Implementation Coalition was formed to protect and safeguard this important law. Together as a coalition, we review all Wisconsin water diversion requests to ensure they comply with the federal legislation protecting our waters.  

We are fighting to keep a STRONG compact that protects our waters for future generations.


Without the voice and support of people like you, our efforts to protect Wisconsin's most precious freshwater resource, would not be possible.

 It's through the everyday activism of thousands of Wisconsinites amplifying our work that we stay motivated and determined to ensure a STRONG compact remains in effect. Such as writing letters, making phone calls, signing petitions and sharing on social media lets our government agencies and elected officials know that we care about our Great Lakes and are holding them accountable for actions and policies that effect our waterways.


A water diversion is any transfer of water across watershed boundaries through a man-made pipeline or canal. Diversions may transfer water in or out of the Great Lakes basin, or between the watersheds of different lakes or rivers within the basin