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News stories tagged with "lake-ontario"

Wind blows hot in Cape Vincent races

In Jefferson County, all county legislators are up for re-election, but only 4 of 15 districts have two candidates. In District 1, Michael Docteur, the incumbent Republican, faces a challenge from Democrat Michael Geiss. Democrat Dean Morrow is challenging Republican Phillip Reed in District 3. Republican Sarah Corey is trying to unseat Democrat Addie Jenne in District 4. And Republican Robert Boice faces a challenge from Democrat Doris McLallen in District 11. In the town of Cape Vincent, two proposed wind farms are generating hot races. The campaigns have centered on whether signing contracts to lease land for the wind turbines is a conflict of interest. David Sommerstein reports.  Go to full article
Bernice Gould, at work.
Bernice Gould, at work.

Heard Up North: last call at the Victoria Hall Crafts and Tea Room

Amherst Island, near Kingston, Ontario, is large enough to have year-round ferry service--and a 5-watt community radio station. It's a peaceful setting. Woods, pastures, and cottages overlook shimmering water, and a steady parade of boats. It's also the home of the Victoria Hall Crafts and Tea Room. Ottawa correspondent Lucy Martin stopped by on Labor Day and happened to catch the very last day of business. Proprietors Bernice Gould and Neil Johnston are today's Heard Up North.  Go to full article

Why is the St. Lawrence so low?

So why are the St. Lawrence River and Lake Ontario so low this summer? David Sommerstein called John Kangas. He's the U.S. Secretary of the International St. Lawrence River Board of Control. This is the agency that actually determines how much water should be let through the dam in Massena, controlling water levels all the way back to Niagara Falls. Kangas says the problems started last winter, when there was too much water. So to prevent flooding in Lake Ontario, the Board let a lot of water through the dam.  Go to full article

River users wait for water levels plan

Boaters, homeowners, and environmentalists along the St. Lawrence River and Lake Ontario are all anxiously awaiting September 17. That's the day the International Joint Commission announces a draft of a new system for controlling water levels in the Great Lakes. It'll be the first change since the 1960s and comes amidst exceptionally low water levels this summer. The new plan is the result of a five-year, $20 million public study. At a crowded meeting about water levels last weekend in Clayton, rumors circulated about a hybrid of three options made public last year. In today's report, we'll hear from a water levels advocate who fears the study won't turn out as he'd hoped. First, here's a part of David Sommerstein's report from last summer reviewing what this water level study is all about.  Go to full article

Unearthing history in Sackets Harbor

A section of a nearly 200-year-old fortification has been unearthed in Sackets Harbor, a key American stronghold during the War of 1812. Jefferson County historian and archaeologist Tim Abel says the section is part of a palisaded breastwork in the village on the eastern end of Lake Ontario, near Watertown. Abel told Todd Moe that Sackets Harbor was the scene of two battles during the War of 1812, when the outpost was a major base of operations for the American navy.  Go to full article

North Country anglers compete for fish funds

Last year, Occidental Chemical, a company in the Buffalo area, agreed to pay New York $12 million for dumping toxic waste in the Niagara River in the 1980s. The chemicals have spread downstream and contaminated Lake Ontario and the St. Lawrence River. It's too late to clean up the mess now. So the Department of Environmental Conservation is going to spend the money on improving the fishery from Niagara Falls to Massena. The DEC is casting for the best "bang-for-your-buck" projects at meetings statewide. Last week, St. Lawrence County anglers made a striking showing at a meeting near Ogdensburg - more than double the attendance of the Rochester meeting. But as David Sommerstein reports, there was a sinking feeling big city wishes may trump North Country concerns.  Go to full article

Invasives destroying Great Lakes food chain

Although zebra mussels have been affecting the ecology of the Great Lakes since they were first found in 1988, researchers are continuously surprised at how much damage they've caused. Now, biologists are wondering if zebra mussels and the more recently arrived quagga mussels are to blame for a collapse of the fishery in one of North America's largest lakes. The Environment Report's Lester Graham reports the researchers are also wondering if this collapse is a preview of what will happen to all of the Great Lakes.  Go to full article
The American eel
The American eel

Eel release "grand experiment"

Biologists in Canada are taking extreme measures to prevent the disappearance of a mysterious and fascinating fish. For the first time ever, they've stocked the St. Lawrence River with 144,000 American eels. David Sommerstein reports.  Go to full article

Eels disappear from Lake Ontario

Few species illustrate the consequences of the complex threats to the Great Lakes system as the American eel. Only 50 years ago, the snake-like fish accounted for half the biomass of Lake Ontario. Today, it's all but gone. David Sommerstein reports. (This story was part of The Great Lakes Radio Consortium's series on Ten Threats to the Great Lakes.)  Go to full article

Virus Killing More Fish in Lake Ontario?

Thousands more dead fish are washing up on the shore of eastern Lake Ontario and the upper St. Lawrence River. Biologists and local businesses are concerned because many different species are being killed. As David Sommerstein reports, a new virus may be causing the die-off.  Go to full article

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