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August 17, 2010

DNR chiefs in both states sign memorandum of mutual effort and understanding

MADISON - Wisconsin and Michigan share common borders and adjacent Great Lakes shorelines, and soon they will share common goals focused on climate change adaptation and mitigation.

Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources Secretary Matt Frank and Michigan Departments of Natural Resources Director Rebecca Humphries have signed a Memorandum of Understanding recognizing that the prevention and mitigation of significant global warming must include changes in social, economic, and governmental activities at both state and regional levels.

The joint memorandum provides a framework for the leadership of the Michigan Department of Natural Resources and Environment and the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources to establish common goals to jointly pursue research, planning, and implementation focused on climate change. Common goals include protecting the health and integrity of our natural ecosystems and human population through the wise stewardship of our natural and cultural resources.

In a letter accompanying a signed copy of the memorandum, Frank said: "Our common border and shared Great Lakes make a formal collaboration the prudent thing to do."

The memorandum notes that our geographical and cultural association with the Great Lakes, the governors, tribes, local and regional government, and colleges and universities of the states of Michigan and Wisconsin all recognize the vital importance of the health and quality of the Great Lakes ecosystem including the natural, physical, and economic welfare of all of our citizens.

While two states can begin this cooperative process, it is the goal of both Michigan and Wisconsin to invite others for a multi-state cooperative to help the Great Lakes region by using the collective strengths in research, coordination, strategic thinking, funding, and other advantages.

Moving forward, both states agree to invite additional state partners to exchange information, and enhance coordination and cooperation. They plan to identify and communicate opportunities for joint participation in projects and programs of mutual interest and share the results of research to maximize capability and limit duplication of effort. Wisconsin and Michigan will provide technical assistance to help to ensure that appropriate environmental and engineering evaluations are conducted. And the states will propose action and potential funding options for greenhouse gas mitigation and climate change adaptation.

FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT: Jack Sullivan (608) 267-9753

Last Revised: Tuesday, August 17, 2010

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