Pennsylvania Lake Erie Environmental Forum taking place at Tom Ridge Environmental Center

Local News

How to deal with high water levels on Lake Erie and the consequences was center stage at a Great Lakes forum today in Erie.

JET 24 Action News’ Starr Bodi was at the Tom Ridge Environmental Center and reports on ways you can help preserve our lakeshore.

When the temperature outside goes from warm to cold or vice versa, our lake also undergoes changes. These changes an impact on water levels throughout the Great Lakes.

“What we’ve seen on Lake is it’s an unregulated lake,” said Timothy Bruno of the Pennsylvania DEP. “So, Mother Nature takes it’s own path in terms of water levels. What we can do is react in a more planned and methodical way about it.”

One climate phenomena with lasting consequences was the Polar Vertex in 2014, which caused water levels to rise for several years. Other factors of high water levels on our lake comprise of water evaporation, erosion and precipitation from Erie’s season changes.

“We have bluffs along our shoreline that erode and we have other coastal features such as Presque Isle State park that are important, economic components.” Bruno said.

There are ways you can help maintain normal water levels by monitoring how much water you use in your home. This forum is an opportunity for guests to understand climate change along the Great Lakes and how to prepare for its effects. One key point made in the forum was that you can prepare. You can prepare yourself for extreme weather in Erie, which includes educating yourself on extreme weather.

“The Red Cross has great resources on extreme weather events,” said Joy Knapp, with the Community Resilience Action Network. “You know, prepare yourself. If we’re going to get a heavy snowfall or if there’s flooding; look what you can do, like having emergency supplies in your car.”

The forum was also a way for guests to learn from experts how our Great Lakes affect one another’s water levels each year.

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