The troublesome Asian carp just will not go away, and unfortunately the many parties working toward a solution to this ongoing problem cannot seem to agree on the best path forward.
Some simply dismiss the Asian carp and do so at great risk. Many support exploration of alternative barriers, control methods and educational tools to address the species’ presence. Yet a third group continues to push for closure of the Chicago locks and permanent separation of the Great Lakes from the Mississippi River Basin – effectively ending all waterborne commerce and transportation causing certain economic devastation across the region.
The Great Lakes Commission released a report this week supporting permanent separation. In the spirit of transparency, however, it is misleading for the commission to characterize this proposal as a true “study.”
The commission’s exercise assumes separation must occur and then merely looks at the geographic points where it could be possible. Although separation was just one of 90 potential control methods recently identified by federal officials in another study, no alternative barriers or measures were reviewed, and the laundry list of logistical hurdles have not been addressed or even fully realized.