IJC to visit 12 cities for public hearings on IJC's interim report on the uses, diversions, and bulk exports of Great Lakes water


The International Joint Commission (IJC) will hold public hearings in Ottawa, Washington and 10 cities in the Great Lakes basin in September and October to solicit public and official comment on the interim recommendations contained in its interim report, "Protection of the Waters of the Great Lakes," that was released on August 18, 1999. Private citizens, members of advocacy groups, representatives of industry, and federal, state, and provincial government officials will have an opportunity to express their views on the report and to suggest to the IJC improvements to the report and its recommendations for inclusion in the final report. Locations and times are provided below. Additional information and any changes will be provided later and will also be posted on the IJC's web site.

September 26, 1999, 1-4:00 p.m. 
Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Midwest Express Center 
Ballroom 104 October 5, 1999, 7-10:00 p.m. 
London, Ontario
London Convention Centre 
300 York Street 
London, Ontario 
(519) 661-5764 
Room: Salon "A" October 12, 1999, 7-10:00 p.m. 
Toronto, Ontario
The Westin Harbour Castle - Business Centre 
1, Harbour Square 
Toronto, Ontario 
(416) 869-1600 
Room: Pier 4 & 5 October 12, 1999, 7-10:00 p.m. 
Detroit, Michigan
Crowne Ballroom 
Hotel Pontchartrain 
2 Washington Boulevard 
(313) 965-0200 October 13, 1999, 10:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. 
Ottawa, Ontario
Canadian Museum of Nature 
240 McLeod St. (Corner of McLeod and Elgin)
Room: "Le Salon" October 14, 1999, 10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. 
Washington, D.C.
Hall of States 
444 N. Capitol St. NW
Note: Panels will be making presentations from 10 to 3. Speakers from the public will be making presentations from 3 to 4.

Room: 383-385

October 19, 1999, 7-10:00 p.m. 
Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario
Bayfront Quality Inn 
180 Bay Street 
Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario 
(705) 945-9264 
Room: Main Room October 19, 1999, 7-10:00 p.m. 
Gary, Indiana
Marquette Park Pavilion 
1 North Grand Boulevard 
(219) 938-7362 October 20, 1999, 7-10:00 p.m. 
Duluth, Minnesota
Great Lakes Ballroom 
Holiday Inn 
200 W. First Street 
(218) 722-1202 October 20, 1999, 7-10:00 p.m. 
Buffalo, New York
Ellicott Room 
University Inn and Conference Center 
2402 N. Forest Road 
Amherst, NY 
(716) 636-7500 October 21, 1999, 7-10:00 p.m. 
Montréal, Quebec
Hôtel le Reine Elizabeth 
900 boul. René-Lévesque ouest 
Montréal, Québec 
(514) 861-3511 
Room: Salon Mackenzie October 21, 1999, 7-10:00 p.m. 
Thunder Bay, Ontario
Valhalla Inn 
1 Valhalla Inn Road 
Thunder Bay, ON 
(807) 577-1121 
Room: Scandia 1 & 2

All interested persons and organizations are encouraged to submit comment. Due to time constraints, speakers may only have the opportunity to summarize their comments (five minutes) during the public hearing. Written comment may also be submitted at the public hearings, or to the following IJC offices during the course of this investigation:

Secretary, Canadian Section 
100 Metcalfe Street, 18th Floor 
Ottawa, Ontario K1P 5M1 
Fax 613.993.5583 
Email Commission@ottawa.ijc.org Secretary, United States Section 
1250 23rd Street NW, Suite 100 
Washington, DC 20440 
Fax 202.736.9015 
Email Commission@washington.ijc.org

The International Joint Commission is a binational Canada-U.S. organization established by the Boundary Waters Treaty of 1909. It assists the governments in managing waters along the border for the benefit of both countries in a variety of ways including examining issues referred to it by the two federal governments.

On February 10, 1999, the governments asked the IJC to investigate the use, diversion and removal of waters in light of their concern that current management principles and conservation measures may be inadequate to ensure the future sustainable use of our shared waters.

In its interim report the IJC recommended that, pending submission of its final report under the reference, U.S. and Canadian federal, state and provincial governments should not authorize or permit any new bulk sales or removals of surface water or groundwater of the Great Lakes basin and should continue to exercise caution with regard to consumptive uses of these waters, in accordance with existing laws in both countries and the Great Lakes Charter. The IJC will issue its final report under the water uses reference in February 2000.

For more information, including the text of the interim report and updates on the public hearings, visit the IJC's web site at www.ijc.org and click on the "Water Uses Reference" button:

Contacts: Washington, D.C. Frank Bevacqua 202.736.9024 Ottawa, ON Fabien Lengellé 613.995.0088