Traverse City Record-Eagle

August 21, 2012

Another View: Phragmites control efforts

By the Huron Daily Tribune
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---- — They're ugly, a nuisance, and a safety hazard.

Phragmites, a perennial, wetland grass that can grow up to 15 feet in height, is becoming a widespread problem along the Great Lakes coastal shoreline. And it's something that needs to be controlled.

Unfortunately, a grant application for a shoreline phragmites control project that was submitted to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency by the Huron Conservation District on behalf of Bay, Arenac, Tuscola and Huron counties was not approved.

The district, for the third year, was seeking funds from the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative grant program, of which $20 million is being awarded for new projects to restore and protect the Great Lakes.

District officials said the EPA reported more than 200 projects were submitted for grant funding, and the requests totaled about $72 million.

We very much hope the federal government understands the importance of conducting this shoreline phragmites control project.

Local officials certainly do because this is an issue that affects everyone, as phragmites are spreading to inland areas.

We applaud ... any ... project that can help control this invasive species that's such a visible — at least to the local area — problem.

Huron Daily Tribune