State sends Waukesha application to divert Lake Michigan water to regional review

The Wisconsin Gazette, January 7, 2016

The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources this week forwarded the city of Waukesha's application to divert Lake Michigan water for a formal regional review process.

Waukesha's application is the first test to the ban on diversions in the Great Lakes Compact and it is not supported by many environmental groups in the Great Lakes region.

“It is our hope and expectation that the regional review process will consider in earnest the deficiencies we have identified in the application and that the Regional Body will recognize that it does not fully and honestly met the standards laid out in the compact,” Jodi Habush Sinykin, an attorney with Midwest Environmental Advocates, said in a news release on Jan. 7.

Sinykin continued, "Quite simply, this application, as currently proposed, falls short and should be rejected by the Great Lakes governors in keeping with the imperative to protect our region’s precious Great Lakes for future generations.”

This decision on the application sets the standard by which other applications will be measured and determines when, where and how often citizens across the Great Lakes region will be allowed to voice their opinions in future decisions.