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Letters: Sanctuary commentary was 'fluff'

Sanctuary commentary was ‘fluff’

I’m responding to Rolf Johnson’s Commentary of July 17, 2017, extolling the virtues of the proposed National Marine Sanctuary in Lake Michigan. Mr. Johnson is CEO of the Wisconsin Maritime Museum in Manitowoc, I’m a riparian landowner.

Much of Mr. Johnson’s Commentary was anecdotal fluff. I’m addressing his most egregious misstatement — his denial of the “incremental takeover of Lake Michigan” which he claims “is neither logical nor based on factual information.” Mr. Johnson is the one who speaks without logic or fact.

Here are the facts: The original Lake Michigan sanctuary as proposed by the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) in December 2014 covered an area of 875 square miles. In December 2016, NOAA had increased it to 1,075 square miles; an Option B expands it to 1,260 square miles.

Russ Green, the NOAA Regional Coordinator of the proposed Lake Michigan Sanctuary, stated that “it can expand over time and change over time.” (NOAA’s Public Listening Session in Sheboygan, 3/15/17). His statement is well founded. He came to Wisconsin from Alpena Michigan, the site of the other Great Lakes sanctuary, where he was the Deputy Superintendent and Research Coordinator at the Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary (TBNMS).