Washington, D.C. – Today, U.S.  Senator Rob Portman (R-Ohio), released the below statement following the Great Lakes and Mississippi River Interbasin Study public meeting in Cleveland:

“Today’s great turnout at the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ hearing on invasive species in Cleveland by businesses, environmentalists, conservations, local community officials and other stakeholders illustrates that there is a broad demand in Ohio to act immediately to protect Lake Erie and the Great Lakes ecosystem from the threat of invasive species.  $11.5 billion in annual revenue to Ohio and over 100,000 jobs tied to fishing, tourism and recreation are at stake,” said Portman.

Earlier this month, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers released its Great Lakes and Mississippi River Interbasin Study (GLMRIS) report following Portman’s continued effort to address the threat of invasive species that could have devastating effects on the Great Lakes region’s economy and environment. In 2012, the Stop Invasive Species Act, written by Portman and U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.), was signed into law by President Obama. The law required the Corps to present Congress, by January 2014, with a report (known as the GLMRIS report) on possible strategies to permanently prevent Asian carp from entering the Great Lakes.

In November, Portman joined a bipartisan group of all 16 Great Lake Senators in calling on the Corps to identify remaining steps in the study as the deadline approached.