THUNDER BAY – International Joint Commission Canadian Chair Joe Comuzzi states, “We have a very substantive three-day program focusing on topics of concern to both scientists and the public, such as the increase in toxic algal blooms, the need to keep beaches healthy, rapid response to invasions of alien aquatic species and emerging chemicals of concern. Vice President Gore joins a distinguished and long line of thought-provoking speakers who have addressed the Biennial Meeting about scientific issues that are vitally important to both Canada and the U.S.”
The IJC have announced that former United States Vice President, best-selling author and Nobel Prize co-recipient Al Gore will be the plenary keynote speaker at its Great Lakes Water Quality Biennial Meeting in Detroit, Michigan at 1:15 pm on October 13, 2011.
“Vice President Gore’s appearance underlines the importance of the IJC’s Biennial Meeting,” said Lana Pollack, U.S. Chair of the IJC. “The Biennial is a true summit of everyone from interested members of the public to a co-recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize. His efforts on climate change will inform the IJC’s future science-based work on Great Lakes climate impacts.”
Before serving two terms as the 45th Vice President, Mr. Gore served in the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate. He is the author of bestsellers Earth in the Balance, An Inconvenient Truth, The Assault on Reason, and Our Choice: A Plan to Solve the Climate Crisis. In 2007, Mr. Gore was the co-recipient, with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, of the Nobel Peace Prize for “informing the world of the dangers posed by climate change.” In addition to a variety of other important projects, Gore spends the majority of his time as chairman of The Climate Reality Project, a nonprofit focused on solutions to the climate crisis.
The Biennial Meeting is being held October 12-14 on the campus of Wayne State University in Detroit, Michigan. Under terms of the Canada-US Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement, the IJC convenes the Biennial Meeting to report on progress toward restoration of the physical, chemical and biological quality of the waters of the basin ecosystem. In particular, the IJC and its Great Lakes Regional Office in Windsor are charged with engaging and informing the public about restoration efforts.
Biennial Meeting workshops will focus on key challenges to water quality, including: harmful and nuisance algae, aquatic invasive species, beach health, fish consumption and chemicals of emerging concern. In addition, a special plenary session will focus on priorities for 2011-2013, providing the public an opportunity to comment on IJC plans for the future study.
For the first time, the Biennial Meeting is being held in conjunction with meetings of other Great Lakes focused organizations, including the Healing Our Waters Coalition (more than 100 environmental organizations) and the Great Lakes Commission, among others.