A recent report, Research and Management Priorities for Aquatic Invasive Species, released by the International Association of Great Lakes Research (IAGLR), challenges the U.S. and Canadian governments to eliminate all new introductions of aquatic invasive species into the Great Lakes within 10 years.
Aquatic invasive species have an impact on both the ecology of the Great Lakes and on the economy. Ballast discharge from foreign ships is the top source for invasions. The Congressional Office of Technology Assessment calculated almost $100 billion in U.S. economic losses over an 85-year period from just 79 non-indigenous species.
Aquatic invasive species are also having dramatic and damaging impacts on the Great Lakes ecosystem, including the loss of organisms and biodiversity, disruptions to food webs, and impacts to economically important fish species.