Minnesota’s U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar introduced legislation Thursday with five senators that would help combat the spread of Asian Carp that is now threatening to enter the Great Lakes through the Chicago canal system.
Klobuchar joined Senators Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Richard Durbin (D-IL), Charles Schumer (D-NY), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), and Sherrod Brown (D-OH) in introducing the Stop Asian Carp Act.
“Minnesotans take great pride in our lakes and rivers, and there’s no place for Asian carp in any of them,” Klobuchar said. “This invasive species will not only ruin the habitat of our native fish populations, but it also will have a harmful effect on commercial and recreational fishing, tourism, and boating. This bill can help stop the spread of this dangerous species.”
The Stop Asian Carp Act would direct the Army Corps of Engineers to evaluate a hydrologic separation of the waterways that connect to the Great Lakes and examine alternative pathways for barge and recreational boating traffic. The bill would also direct the U.S. Geological Survey and the Fish and Wildlife Service to monitor and survey the waters of the Great Lakes basin to identify additional threats from Asian Carp and to identify means of prevention.
Asian carp can weigh more than 100 pounds, and they can grow to a length of more than four feet. If allowed to enter the Great Lakes, the species could negatively impact the region’s $7.5-billion fishing industry and the 800,000 jobs it supports.