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Be a Voice for Birds and the Great Lakes: Public Input Needed on Great Lakes Restoration Planning

Help accelerate efforts to protect and restore the largest system of fresh surface water in the world

The Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GRLI) is the premier Great Lakes federal restoration program, guiding billions of dollars to critically important coastal wetland restoration projects and conservation programs within the Great Lakes region. Since 2010, the GLRI has funded more than 7,000 projects that have improved water quality and habitat for the benefit of our region’s wildlife, local communities, and economies. The federal program has invested $3.8 billion to clean up toxic pollution, reduce runoff pollution, prevent and control invasive species, restore habitat, and educate young people. 

The GLRI also supports Audubon Great Lakes’ and partners’ work to protect vulnerable birds across the Great Lakes region like endangered Great Lakes Piping Plovers and threatened and endangered marsh birds like the Black Tern. Learn more how the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative is supporting Audubon Great Lakes' and partners' work to protect vulnerable birds across the Great Lakes region here.  

The U.S. EPA and federal partners are currently in the process of developing an updated action plan for the GLRI that will prioritize federal Great Lakes restoration and protection investments. Throughout the summer, the U.S. EPA is hosting a series of public input sessions on how to shape the next plan, known as Great Lakes Action Plan IV, which will guide restoration efforts from 2025 to 2029and they want to hear your voice As part of the process, the EPA and partners are asking for input and perspectives on the following questions: 

  • How can the plan be improved over previous GLRI action plans? 

  • What key priorities should be included in the plan? 

  • How can the plan be improved to better incorporate environmental justice and the impacts of climate change? 

Audubon Great Lakes staff have been attending sessions and emphasize top priorities to be included in the GLRI Great Lakes Restoration Initiative Action Plan IV that will make the region more resilient in the face of climate change, promote equity and communities most impacted, and that will accelerate the health of the Great Lakes ecosystem. 

You can learn more about Action Plan IV and speak to EPA staff at your local hearing too. At each session, the agency will provide an overview of the GLRI and the purpose of the action plan, and then give participants an opportunity to ask questions and speak with staff who work on each of the priority areas included in the action plan – including toxic substances and Areas of Concern, invasive species, nonpoint source pollution impacts on nearshore health, habitat restoration and native species, and foundations for future restoration actions. 

Be a voice for the Great Lakes and attend one of the remaining public session near you!  

Rochester, NY 

Wednesday, July 19, 6 pm – 8 pm EDT 

Rochester Museum & Science Center 
657 East Avenue 
Rochester, New York  

Milwaukee, WI 

Tuesday, July 25, 6-8:00 p.m. CT 
Discovery World 
500 N Harbor View Dr. 

Detroit, Michigan

Tuesday, August 15, 6-8:00 p.m.
DNR Outdoor Adventure Center
1801 Atwater Street

Virtual Session 

Wednesday, August 23 - 5 pm – 7pm CDT 
Register here! 


Additional comments or questions can also be shared with EPA by emailing 

Click here for more information from the EPA. 

How you can help, right now