Re-Envisioning the Chicago River
Adopting Comprehensive Regional Solutions to the Invasive Species Crisis
In response to a public health emergency more than 100 years ago, engineers reversed the Chicago River and built the Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal to carry wastewater away from Lake Michigan, the city’s source of drinking water. The canal also provides a shipping link between the Mississippi River and the Great Lakes, opening navigation not only to recreational boats and commercial barges, but also to invasive species, and it diverts massive amounts of water from Lake Michigan. The unfolding Asian carp crisis reveals more than just the challenges faced by local, state, and federal agencies in stopping invasive species from entering the Great Lakes. It also exposes critical infrastructure deficiencies in the region’s wastewater, stormwater, and transportation systems.
last revised 10/4/2010
Sign up for NRDC's online newsletter
Water on Switchboard
NRDC experts write about water efficiency, green infrastructure and climate on the NRDC blog.
Recent Water Posts
- What does California's Drought Mean for the Proposed Bay-Delta Tunnels?
- posted by Doug Obegi, 3/24/15
- New Tar Sands Water Policy from Government of Alberta Favors Industry
- posted by Danielle Droitsch, 3/13/15
- A Coal Cap in China's Power Sector Can Reduce Air Pollution and Harvest Economic Benefits
- posted by Luan Dong, 2/12/15
NRDC Gets Top Ratings from the Charity Watchdogs
- Charity Navigator awards NRDC its 4-star top rating.
- Worth magazine named NRDC one of America's 100 best charities.
- NRDC meets the highest standards of the Wise Giving Alliance of the Better Business Bureau.