Great Lakes News and Water Levels

July 10th, 2014 at 7:21 pm by under Bill's Blog, News, Weather

modis lake michigan  This is a MODIS Lake Michigan satellite picture taken today (Thurs.) showing clear skies over Lake Michigan.  There is an onshore  breeze all around the lake (west wind in Lower Michigan, north wind in Indiana, east wind in Wisconsin).  With all the rain we’ve had, everything is green and crops are mostly in very good shape at this point in the growing season (picture from NOAA Coastwatch).

Lake Michigan/Huron is up 4″ in the last month, up 14″ in the last year and just 5″ below the century average (that should drop to -4 or -3 this month). Lake Superior is up 3″ in the last month, up 13″ year-to-year and is now 6″ above average level. Lake Erie is up 2″ in the last month, up 5″ in the last year and is now 5″ above the long-term average.  Lake Ontario is down 2″ in the last month, down 2″ year-to-year and is 5″ above the century average. Lake St. Clair is up 2″ in the last month, up 4″ year-to-year and is 3″ above the long-term average. Flow down the St. Mary’s River from Lake Superior into Lake Michigan/Huron will remain above average through July. River levels in West Michigan remain above average flow. The Grand River in Grand Rapids is high, but still well below flood stage at 8680 cfs compared to an average flow of 2,370 cfs. Lake Michigan beach water temperatures are in the 60s. The mid-Lake Michigan buoy west of Holland (east-southeast of Milwaukee) shows a water temp. of 63°.

Also, World’s Strangest LakesIron Ore Shipments on the Great Lakes This Year Down 17%…and 9 of the best Michigan beaches.

Finally, check out this article from yesterday…it says:  “The Council of the Great Lakes Region released a new report last week, ‘Low Water Blues,’ projecting the economic impacts of future low water levels in the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence River regions.  Although the report estimates a potential $19 billion in economic losses by 2050 if the Great Lakes water levels continue to decline, Stop the Drop founder Colin Dobell told The Expositor that this number won’t be enough alone to raise the alarm, stressing the need for the public to rally behind the cause in order for the government to take action.  “The report had a good, broad amount of funding and involvement across all sectors…”

Now compare that  alarmism with reality in the first paragraph above.   The Great Lakes are not “continuing to decline”…they have gone up significantly.  Lakes Superior, Michigan and Huron are all up over a foot in the last year.  Lake Superior is so high that they have upped the water release through the St. Mary’s River, which flows down into Lake Huron.   Contrast that article to this one in the Chicago Tribune.

14 Responses to “Great Lakes News and Water Levels”

  1. Brian(Grandville) says:

    Nice work as always in my favorite weekly thread Bill.

    1. Jack says:

      Brian,,,, I knew This would Make U Happy on This THERAPUTIC THURSDAY !! Bill, What a TREASURE are Great Lakes ARE…..Keep The Good NEWS ,,,,FLOWING BILL. ……Staying CUEDDD…………… ;-)

    2. Jack says:

      BRIAN : Go TIGERS, Kick Some ” ROYAL” ( pun) BUTT in This Series ….. ;-) . Stay CueDD…..

      1. Brian(Grandville) says:

        Lol!!! 3-0 already. Lets BBQ some Royals.

  2. DF (EGR) says:

    LOL they won’t stop with the nonsense articles :)

    I have seen quite a few articles about the welcomed rise which is a miricle. This is all great news for the sailors out there.

  3. Michael g (se GR) says:

    Doublespeak. Rising water is falling, dropping temps are rising, smaller spending increases are cuts, fewer tornados are more, weaker hurricanes are stronger, growing ice caps are disappearing.

    Most people are too lazy to notice.

    1. Ned S. (East of Holland) says:

      Excellent point, Michael g.

      1. TomKap (Michigan & Fuller - GR) says:

        And then we have morons like this who post ‘crap’ like this….how many not-so-bright people will believe this junk:

        https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=689572791113933&set=a.180744645330086.44494.100001836562419&type=1&theater

  4. Barb says:

    We had a gorgeous day on Mackinac Island. Water levels are up but there is still a lot of foliage sticking out of the lake around the island although not as much as last year. BTW, the new stairway to Arch Rock is complete and is beautiful.

  5. Vincent(N.E.Kent CO) says:

    What a great night out.Cool and clear with a near full moon out my garage door to look at.

  6. GunLakeDeb says:

    Regarding Stop the Drop (?) – there’s a bunch of Grant Money out there, to study various water issues. I guess nobody has said it has to be a VALID issue? I mean, how high do they want the lakes to be? – I remember when homes falling into Lake Michigan was a sad-but-common occurrence, due to shoreline erosion from high water levels.

  7. dano (Norton Shores) says:

    Amazing how articles can be written about the Great Lakes drying up, some even suggested last year the Great Lakes may drop another 3 feet!! Where are those people now? Lake Michigan is up 14” in the last year, just think about how much water that is. I get tired of the alarmists that can write those articles but can’t do a follow up. For many of us who have lived on the Great Lakes our entire lives, we have seen the lakes at their highest and lowest. Sometimes it’s scary when the water gets too high and too low. But these cycles happen, just like the weather.

    Here are some articles written trying to scare people.

    “Great Lakes May be drying up” Feb 2014
    http://grist.org/list/the-great-lakes-may-be-drying-up/

    “The Great Lakes Go Dry: How One-Fifth Of The World’s Fresh Water Is Dwindling Away”
    http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2014/01/28/3193301/climate-change-draining-great-lakes/

    And this one from National Geographic. (and we think of National Geographic as always being right.)
    “Down the Drain: The Incredible Shrinking Great Lakes”
    http://environment.nationalgeographic.com/environment/habitats/down-the-drain/

    Many articles like these on the internet, I just wish the people that write them would do a follow up. Nobody every wants to admit that maybe they sounded the alarm and were wrong.

  8. Bernie (At da Lakeshore) says:

    The only way the level of Lake Michigan can be controlled is by building a dam and ship locks between Lake St.Clare and Lake Huron.

    And if they ever do build a dam and locks the shipping companies best be the folks who pay for it! Not the taxpayers. A toll to enter the upper lakes isn’t going to hurt the international shippers. (The folks who brought us the Goby fish and Zebra Mussels.)

  9. Daniel G says:

    With the compensating works on the St. Marys in the Soo opening up to release water I will assume the three hydro plants are at maximum output right now too.
    Great Lakes power in Ontario, Soo Edison, the Corp of Engineers should be making lottsa low cost juice for consumers out there…and no carbon emmissions to boot.
    Story about the very low levels in the Colorado behind Hoover and Glen Canyon Dam. Now they are one worried group of people out there….whats good for us could be bad for them. Don’t write off everything you read, good or bad about ‘global warming’. There is a bit of truth on all sides. Look at 91 in the Norwegian Artic yesterday???

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