In the news: New Illinois law helps prevent spread of AIS

August 2nd, 2012 by

As an amendment to the Boater Registration and Safety Act signed into law by Illinois Governor Pat Quinn, aquatic plants and animals would need to be removed from seaplanes and watercraft before moving between bodies of water. The requirement is an important step in preventing the spread of aquatic invasive species throughout the state of Illinois, as well as between states and bodies of water where these vehicles might travel. 

You can read a short synopsis of the legislation from our friends at Illinois Invasive Species Awareness Month here, and read the full text of the legislation here.

Keeping our waters clean and safe this holiday weekend

May 25th, 2012 by
Memorial Day weekend is a holiday that lots of people look forward to. For many, it’s the first chance they get to head out to the beach, take the boat out on the water, fish and swim, and just enjoy a little time outdoors. And it’s also a perfect opportunity to get out and spend some quality time on Lake Michigan. 
With that in mind, there are tons of ways to have a great time on the water this weekend and help us keep the Great Lakes clean all at the same time. Listed below are a number of links with tips on how you can help us protect our waterways without missing a moment of fun this weekend.
The Indiana Department of Natural Resources has put together this great PDF with clean boating tips. It offers some quick and easy ways you can help prevent the spread of aquatic invasive species when you head out on the water. 
The U.S. EPA also has some information on how boaters can help reduce pollution while setting sail. 
The folks at the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality have an even more extensive list of pollution prevention information on their Eco-Friendly Boating Fact Sheet.  
No matter how you spend it, have a safe and fun weekend while helping us protect and preserve our waterways.

Environmentally friendly boating keeps waterways blue and beautiful

April 4th, 2012 by

Our friends at New Jersey Sea Grant have some great tips about safe, clean, environmentally friendly things that every boater can do to help the environment while preparing their watercraft for the season. And while there are some differences in conditions between the east coast and our Midwestern lakes and rivers, there are a number of steps that are universally good for protecting the outdoors.

In the Midwest, most boats spend the winter in storage, and when spring arrives they need fresh oil and hydraulic fluids for a season full of trouble-free operation. As with the oil in your car, keeping those fluids from contaminating the water and the ground is important. Auto parts stores, marine supply shops and garages, and even major retailers throughout Illinois and Indiana will collect used oil and hydraulic fluids for recycling free of charge. Likewise, batteries that have been sitting for extended periods of time may need to be replaced, and the old batteries can be recycled at a number of stores. Many retailers will recycle your old battery for you when you purchase a new one from them.
Boats that have been stored for extended periods will usually need a good cleaning as well before taking them to the water. Before you get out the cleaning supplies or buy new ones, look into the many options available for biodegradable and environmentally friendly cleaning products. There are a wide range of safe and effective products that are natural or biodegradable, and they will keep your boat, trailer, and equipment looking great.
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