Lake Michigan Forum Mercury Dialogue
The purpose of this project was to convene local watershed stakeholders and coal-fired electrical utilities in an open dialogue about sources of mercury in a watershed. The intent of the dialogue was to find ways for local stakeholders and utilities to work together and identify opportunities to further reduce mercury emissions. Engaging the local utilities in such a dialogue was the first step in creating a watershed-based mercury reduction plan.
The proposed project location was the Pike-Root Watershed which spans the Illinois-Wisconsin state boundary between Milwaukee and Chicago and includes the cities of Waukegan, Illinois and Racine, Wisconsin. This location was selected because of the high level of involvement of local stakeholders in watershed and Area of Concern (AOC) issues as well as for the exemplary activities that have been undertaken by the local electrical utilities to reduce mercury emissions.
Meeting objectives included:
- Educate and/or update the Lake Michigan Forum and meeting attendees about ongoing mercury initiatives in the Basin;
- Exchange information about mercury initiatives and policy; and,
- Identify possible roles the Lake Michigan Forum regarding mercury initiatives in the Basin.
An output of the dialogue was a background paper, which provided the Lake Michigan Forum and meeting attendees with a baseline level of information about ongoing mercury initiatives in the Basin as well as provide context for discussions about possible roles for the Forum on this issue. The background paper was not intended to be a comprehensive overview of mercury science, policy, and programs but simply a start to further discussions between the Forum and stakeholders on the issue.