Thank you very much, Mr. Chair.
Thank you to our presenters here this afternoon.
Certainly this is a study that's of prime interest to me, coming from the Sarnia area. We have heard a lot in the community over the last couple of years about the concerns with Asian carp, and before that of course we dealt with issues of zebra mussels and round gobies. I recall from when I was chair of the water treatment plant, which supplies the drinking water to most of our county, the concerns we had when the zebra mussels started, with the clogging of the intake pipes and all of the extra work that had to be done to make sure the intakes were open and able to bring in the water, the Great Lakes water, to be treated for drinking.
So it's not anything new in our area to be dealing with invasive species. But I think the Asian carp threat is one that has really raised awareness in the population. I think one of the things that puts the most fear in people is the carp's jumping ability, the leaping ability, and the reports and the stories about them jumping right into small boats.
As well as a thriving sport and commercial fishery, we also have a thriving tourism industry, so we're not only looking at the problems with sport fishing and commercial fishing, but we're also looking at the many people who come to enjoy our waterways, with skiing, jet skiing, pleasure boating, and so on. So the Asian carp issue is certainly stressful for people in my area of the Great Lakes.
I know we've been doing some work back and forth with the American government, trying to put things in place to make sure the Asian carp does not get into the Great Lakes. I have a specific question on the report that was released. The Great Lakes Commission and the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence cities initiative had commissioned the study that focused on the physical separation of the Great Lakes from the Mississippi River watershed to prevent the movement in either direction of the Asian carp. There were three possible options that were put forward in the report, but there was no preferred option recommended in the report.
Do you have any comments on the apparent need for the physical separation of the watersheds in question or any comments on what work has been done with the American and Canadian governments at this point?