Indicators to evaluate progress under the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement

Indicators for Evaluation Task Force
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International Joint Commission

With the 1987 amendments to the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement, responsibility for reporting on the condition of the lakes and remedial programs shifted to governments, which developed bilateral mechanisms such as the State of the Lakes Ecosystem Conference (SOLEC). Also, governments have been seeking to identify the core needs of their data collection and other programs. The Commission's advisory bodies have, in the meantime, tended to focus more on analysis and policy issues, and have expressed a need for revised guidance on the Commission's desired data activities. In response to these changes in the way that functions are organized and carried out, the Commission identified, as a priority activity, the consideration of its data and information needs, and the identification of indicators to evaluate Agreement progress. Consequently, it established an Indicators for Evaluation Task Force in 1993 to assist in reviewing these requirements and to develop a framework within which to conduct its evaluation and develop advice. The Commission, in particular, suggested a focus on state-of-the-lake reporting and consideration of integrative indicators of ecosystem integrity.

Federal Documents & Miscellaneous Reports
water quality, ecosystem, indicators, fishability, swimmability, drinkability, human health, phosphorus, biological diversity