Years of industrial activity and development have left many lakes and rivers contaminated with nitrogen, heavy metals, PCBs, and other toxic pollutants. Many rivers and streams have been dammed, channelized, or diverted to suit local needs. The result is that many aquatic ecosystems are stressed and degraded—unsafe for people and unsuitable for some wildlife. Sea Grant is working to restore these waterbodies through development and implementation of restoration techniques that will improve coastal health and ensure continued enjoyment and use of coastal resources by the public.



River Restoration: Practices and Concepts
This workshop series brings together experts from around the United States and Canada to discuss the successes and failures of current river restoration technologies.

The Great Lakes Legacy Act  
This congressional act provides matching funds to communities to speed up the pace of cleanup of contaminated sediments within Great Lakes Areas of Concern.  The video (showing below) introduces people to the benefits of restoring degraded waterbodies. To order a copy of the DVD, visit the Product page.


Developing functional indicators of coastal wetlands health
Matthew Cooper, University of Notre Dame

Restoration of native pine species in Great Lakes coastal environment
Robert Fahey, The Morton Arboretum

More Coastal Restoration research


Helping Hands Curriculum: Restoration for Healthy Habitats
Revitalizing Local Waterfront Economies: The Great Lakes Legacy Act
Great Lakes Legacy Act Fact Sheets 

Web Links

Great Lakes Restoration
U.S. EPA Great Lakes Ecological Protection and Restoration


Leslie Dorworth
Aquatic Ecology Specialist

Caitie Nigrelli
Environmental Social Scientist

Kristin TePas
Great Lakes Community Decisionmaking Specialist

Illinois-Indiana Sea Grant
Purdue University
195 Marsteller Street
West Lafayette, IN 47907-2033
University of Illinois Extensio
Sea Grant
Purdue University