Introduction The Great Lakes St. Lawrence River Basin is the largest freshwater basin on earth, containing roughly 20 percent of the world’s surface freshwater. The Great Lakes is a highly complex ecosystem, composed of interrelated open water, shoreline and upper watershed systems, which support a high level of biological diversity. Collectively, the five lakes and their draining river systems span two provinces, eight states, more than forty ‘First Nations/Tribes’ and hundreds of municipalities. The Basin has played a major role in the economic development of the United States and Canada. It continues to provide water for domestic consumption, industry, transportation, power, recreation, and a host of other uses. However, the Great Lakes Basin is under siege. Invasive species, climate change, economic decline, urban sprawl, and chemical and biological contaminants threaten the health and vitality of this ecosystem. Despite numerous initiatives to remedy these varying threats, the environmental sustainability of the basin remains an important public policy and transboundary governance challenge.
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doi.org/10.7564/14-IJWG78
International Journal of Water Governance

Debora L. VanNijnatten, Carolyn Johns, Kathryn Bryk Friedman, & Gail Krantzberg. (2016). Assessing Adaptive Transboundary Governance Capacity in the Great Lakes Basin: The Role of Institutions and Networks. International Journal of Water Governance, 2016(4:2), 5–6. doi:10.7564/14-IJWG78