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More voices needed in sounding carp alarm

Tribune Staff • Mar 23, 2017 at 1:00 PM

It’s no secret that Asian carp could have a detrimental impact in the Great Lakes and adjoining waterways.

Two species — bighead and silver carp — feed on huge volumes of plankton that forms the base of aquatic food chains. They have infested the Illinois River, which connects with other waterways that reach Lake Michigan at Chicago.

Experts are worried that the establishment of Asian carp in the Great Lakes could cause significant economic impact to the $7 billion commercial and sport fishing industry.

Grand Haven is one of those communities that would lose from the establishment of Asian carp. That’s why we’re more than pleased to learn that efforts to fight the spread of the fish are being fought right here.

When news came out that the Trump administration delayed indefinitely a plan to strengthen defenses on a crucial Chicago-area waterway to prevent Asian carp from reaching the Great Lakes, Grand Haven City Councilman Josh Brugger spearheaded an effort to urge other small, local lakeshore communities to write to Washington to urge them to keep up the fight against the invasive fish.

It’s great to see that those who serve on our City Council see this threat as a significant issue facing our environment and economy, and that they want to try to make an impact.

Our hope is that lakeshore communities across the region take a stand and voice their concerns on the threat of Asian carp, joining the cause and repeating the message voiced by Brugger. All of these voices can only add to what U.S. Rep. Bill Huizenga, R-Zeeland, and others have already said about the threat.

Our Views reflects the majority opinion of the members of the Grand Haven Tribune editorial board: Kevin Hook, Matt DeYoung, Alex Doty and Mark Brooky. What do you think? E-mail us a letter to the editor to news@grandhaventribune.com or log-in to our website and leave a comment below.

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