Feb 17

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Property Values vs. the Environment

A plan for regulating the water levels in Lake Ontario may
improve wetland health, but speed property erosion.


Transcript of the Audio Podcast:

Waves in Lake Ontario – photo courtesy SYSS Mouse

Homeowner rights versus a healthy Lake Ontario ecosystem… on this CurrentCast.

The Canadian and U.S. International Joint Commission sets Great Lakes Policy. For the last fifty years, they have regulated the water level in Lake Ontario to minimize highs and lows. This policy helps protect lakeshore properties from wave damage and erosion, but harms wetland ecosystems.

So the IJC proposed a plan that allows a natural pattern of high and low water. Environmentalists applauded, but Niagara County Legislator David Godfrey says say the plan will put property on the south side of the lake at risk.

Godfrey: “Lake Ontario is actually tipped a little bit to the south. So the storms are much more violent on this side.”

It’s a local dispute, but it illustrates the frequent need to balance environmental concerns with individual homeowner rights.

Support for CurrentCast comes from the Mitsubishi Corporation Foundation for the Americas. Learn more online at CurrentCast.org.


Niagara County Legislator, David Godfrey

Learn More:

Proposal for Lake Ontario and St. Lawrence River Regulation from the IJC

“History of Water Regulation in the LOSLR Basin” from The International Joint Commission

Proposed water level regulations could affect property values” from The Buffalo News

“IJC Recommends Water Levels Plan to U.S. and Canadian Governments” from The Nature Conservancy

“Monroe, Wayne leaders blast lake level plan” from Rochester Democrat and Chronicle

Editorial from Niagara-Orleans Regional Alliance



Permanent link to this article: http://www.currentcast.org/development/property-values-vs-the-environment/