A new report from the Nature Conservancy and Anderson Economic Group LLC indicates that aquatic invasive species cost Michigan and other states in the Great Lakes region significantly more than $100 million per year.
Industrial, utility and municipal organizations that draw water from the lakes for operations bear a majority of the cost, as well as the tourism and fishery industries. Also included in the $100 million estimate are lost revenue, the costs to nonprofit organizations working in related areas, and homeowners spending money on private abatement.
This issue is receiving greater attention as the number of invasive species (currently estimated at 186) continues to grow and companies’ lost revenue is becoming more documented. The health of the Great Lakes impacts the quality of life in Michigan, which in turn attracts new business and jobs to the state.
MNA is dedicated to protecting Michigan’s natural heritage and hopes that conservation organizations, lawmakers and businesses will continue to work together to preserve the integrity of the Great Lakes.