Legislation to Fund Restoration of the Great Lakes Advances to U.S. Senate

Attributable to Senior Policy Director for Audubon Great Lakes, Marnie Urso

“Over the past 30 years, Great Lakes populations of breeding marsh birds have significantly declined, but restoration of the habitats they need across the Great Lakes region is helping to bring them back. Today, the Senate Committee on Environment & Public Works voted to advance legislation that will allow critical restoration work to continue across the Great Lakes region. 

Since 2010, the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI) has invested $3.8 billion – funding more than 7,000 projects – to clean up toxic pollution, reduce runoff pollution, and restore wildlife habitat across the Great Lakes region. S. 3738, the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative Act of 2024, would extend the vital restoration program for five years, increasing authorized funding from $475 million to $500 million annually. 

The Great Lakes are a vital resource that face big challenges and protecting them and their surrounding habitats is a massive undertaking, but one that is crucial for millions of birds, countless other wildlife and 40 million people. Thanks to GLRI funding, Audubon Great Lakes and partners have helped restore and conserve over 10,000 acres of wetlands habitat for vulnerable birds like the Least Bittern, Common Gallinule, and Pied-billed Grebe. Extending this program will allow important projects like these, to continue in communities across the Great Lakes region.  

Thank you to the Senators on the Committee on Environment & Public Works who unanimously voted to advance this bipartisan bill. We encourage the full Senate to take quick action to pass it, and the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure to take up this important legislation as soon as possible." 


About Audubon Great Lakes 

The National Audubon Society protects birds and the places they need, today and tomorrow. Audubon works throughout the Americas using science, advocacy, education and on-the-ground conservation. State programs, nature centers, chapters and partners give Audubon an unparalleled wingspan that reaches millions of people each year to inform, inspire and unite diverse communities in conservation action. A nonprofit conservation organization since 1905, Audubon believes in a world in which people and wildlife thrive. Audubon Great Lakes is a regional office of Audubon, learn more at  

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