Making Waves
February 15, 2017
In this edition of Making Waves:
Milwaukee Bans Coal Tar Sealants
The City of Milwaukee has joined a growing number of municipalities around the U.S. in banning the use of coal tar sealants.  The city council unanimously passed a city ordinance that bans CTS after a study conducted by the US Geological Survey and the Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewerage District found that coal tar sealant was the primary contributor of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in streambed sediment sampled from a number of sites around the city. To read more, please click here

Ullrich Represents Cities Initiative at Great Lakes Summit in D.C.
Dave Ullrich represented the Cities Initiative at the Great Lakes Summit February 7 and 8 in Washington that featured a number of Senators and Congressional Representatives from the Great Lakes Task Force, as well as many committee staffers who work on Great Lakes issues.  About 40 representatives of the Great Lakes Community attended.  Most significant was that the bipartisan coalition on the Great Lakes is stronger than ever, and they will be pushing for full funding of the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative at $300 million per year, reducing nutrient loadings, keeping Asian carp out of the Great Lakes, and all the other top priorities for the Lakes.  The speakers all celebrated the victories in the last congress that included authorization of GLRI for the next 5 years and banning microbeads.  They also mentioned the importance of the work starting on the Farm Bill and the recently passed Water Infrastructure Financing Act, which is in the early stages of implementation.  They were very much in a "wait and see" mode as to where the new administration is going on the Great Lakes issues .  

New Canadian Programs on Climate Change and Sustainable Development
The Honourable Amarjeet Sohi, Minister of Infrastructure and Communities, and the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) President, Clark Somerville, recently launched two new programs to address climate change in communities and to strengthen infrastructure planning and decision-making.  The Municipalities for Climate Innovation Program and the Municipal Asset Management Program, which will be delivered by the FCM, will provide municipalities with access to funding, training and learning opportunities to increase their capacity to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, build resilience to the impacts of climate change, and support better planning and management of municipal infrastructure.  Details about the programs are available on the FCM website.

Prime Minister Trudeau and President Trump Issue Joint Statement
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and President Donald Trump issued a joint statement after their meeting in Washington, DC.  The statement recognizes the close economic ties between the two countries and partnership on energy and environment issues.  Of promise, is a statement that addresses the Great Lakes specifically: We also look forward to building on our many areas of environmental cooperation, particularly along our border and at the Great Lakes, and we will continue to work together to enhance the quality of our air and water.   To read the full statement, please click here.

Events & Webinars
Webinar: Making Urban Water Sustainability a Reality
Part of the Creating a Blue Dialogue webinar series, hosted by POLIS, this webinar will explore approaches to water infrastructure investment in Canada.

Friday, February 17, 2017
2:00pm - 3:00pm Central / 3:00pm - 4:00pm Eastern
Click here to register.
Climate Leadership Conference
Gathering of forward-thinking leaders from business, government, academia, and the non-profit community to explore energy and climate solutions, and provide support to leaders taking action on climate change.
March 1-3, 2017
Chicago, IL
Marriott Downtown Chicago
15% Off Registration Code: 
CLC-Great Lakes-15%
Webinar: Lead in Drinking Water - Sharing Details about Ontario's Response
 Join the Canadian Environmental Law Association and the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change for a webinar on the Ontario government's past and current activities related to lead in drinking water.

March 2, 2017
1:00 PM - 2:00 PM Eastern
Click here to register.
Webinar: Public-Private Partnerships, Green Infrastructure, and Private Delivery/Financing
Join the Cities Initiative as it hosts ECT and Corvias Solutions to provide insight from a recently released report about P3s and large-scale green infrastructure in the Great Lakes basin.

Thursday, March 23, 2017
11:00am Central - noon Central/Noon Eastern - 1:00pm Eastern
Click here to register.

Untrouble the Waters: Freshwater Lab Summit 2017
A summit dedicated to bringing mayors, local leaders, and researchers together to envision and launch projects that benefit communities and watersheds alike.

May 10-11, 2017
University of Illinois - Chicago
Click here for more information.

Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Green Infrastructure Conference
Conference focused on using green infrastructure across the landscape with a primary goal to protect the surface waters in the Great Lakes region.
May 31 - June 2, 2017
Detroit, MI
Registration is not yet open but a preliminary conference overview and information are available here.

Funding Opportunities
Sustain Our Great Lakes
In 2017, grant funding will be awarded in three categories, focused on protecting, restoring and sustaining Great Lakes fish, wildlife and habitat:
  • Stream and Riparian Habitat
  • Coastal Wetlands
  • Green Storm Water Infrastructure - New funding category in 2017

Applications due February 21, 2017
Request for Proposals will be available at

United States
Great Lakes Sediment and Nutrient Reduction Program
Grants provided under this program will focus on reducing sediment and phosphorus runoff into the Great Lakes.
Applications Due March 31, 2017 at 6:00pm Eastern

For the Request for proposal and to apply, click here.

Please join the 128 Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Cities Initiative members in protecting and restoring the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence River by clicking here for a membership application. If you are already a member, please encourage your neighboring communities to join, and be sure to renew your membership when you receive your notice.  

If your municipality would like to share news with the Cities Initiative, please email information to Melissa Soline at