Portman pleased with GLRI funding, but urges more EPA action

Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio) was pleased with the recent announcement that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will fund the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative with nearly $12 million to protect the public from harmful algal blooms in Lake Erie.

While expressing his satisfaction with the Great Lakes initiative, Portman urged the EPA to do more to protect other bodies of water throughout Ohio.

“I am glad that the EPA is stepping up to the plate and helping to combat harmful algal blooms with this funding,” Portman said. “But it is my understanding that this funding is limited to the Great Lakes and will not be available to inland water bodies in Ohio like Buckeye Lake, Grand Lake St. Marys and Harsha Lake, which all struggle with harmful algal blooms as well. I hope the EPA will continue to work with the Ohio delegation to make these resources accessible across the state.”

Portman has been an advocate for keeping bodies of water clean and safe for the public, authoring the “Harmful Algal Blooms and Hypoxia and Control Amendments Act of 2013,” which was recently enacted.

The bill will reauthorize the Harmful Algal Bloom and Hypoxia Research and Control Act, initially enacted in 1998 and renewed in 2004 and 2008.