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Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI)

The Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI) [exit DNR] is a federal program that provides unprecedented funding for protection and restoration efforts on the five Great Lakes. The GLRI is guided by an action plan with detailed performance goals and clear accountability standards. An interagency task force, led by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), coordinates federal efforts and directs funding to states, cities and nongovernmental groups that are best able to address local restoration priorities.

Focus Areas

State and local governments and non–profit organizations are eligible to receive grants from the EPA for projects to accelerate environmental progress in five focus areas.

  1. Toxic Substances and Areas of Concern
  2. Invasive Species
  3. Nonpoint Source Pollution Impacts on Nearshore Health
  4. Habitat Protection and Restoration
  5. Foundations for Future Restoration Actions (accountability, monitoring, evaluation, communication and partnership building)

Long-term Goals

Since its start in 2010, the GLRI provides funding to solve key problems facing the Great Lakes and to accelerate progress toward achieving the following long-term goals.

  • Fish safe to eat
  • Water safe for recreation
  • Safe source of drinking water
  • All Areas of Concern delisted
  • Harmful/nuisance algal blooms eliminated
  • No new self-sustaining invasive species
  • Existing invasive species controlled
  • Native habitat protected and restored to sustain native species

GLRI Funding In Wisconsin

Federal funding, totaling more than $816 million through the GLRI, has made over 1,200 projects possible throughout Wisconsin's Great Lakes basin.

Learn more about GLRI projects and funding through the following publications and websites.

Featured Videos

Port Wing Estuary Restoration

The Town of Port Wing restored 10 acres of important coastal wetlands in the Flag River Estuary along Lake Superior. This restoration was the result of Great Lakes Restoration Initiative funding and collaboration with many partners. The community is also connected to this special place by improved public recreational access and educational opportunities, such as a curriculum to engage area students in monitoring and other activities at the restoration site.

A Seat at the Table: The Great Lakes Legacy Act

Learn what it means to be a cost-share partner with the EPA under the Great Lakes Legacy Act (GLLA). The GLLA is a component of the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative that addresses sediment remediation and habitat restoration in Great Lakes AOCs.