Jump to main content.


GLWQA Links

exit EPA (About PDF)


Back to Index

The Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement

Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement 1978

What is the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement?

The Agreement, first signed in 1972 and renewed in 1978, expresses the commitment of each country to restore and maintain the chemical, physical and biological integrity of the Great Lakes Basin Ecosystem and includes a number of objectives and guidelines to achieve these goals. It reaffirms the rights and obligation of Canada and the United States under the Boundary Waters Treaty and has become a major focus of Commission activity.

In 1987, a Protocol was signed amending the 1978 Agreement. The amendments aim to strengthen the programs, practices and technology described in the 1978 Agreement and to increase accountability for their implementation. Timetables are set for implementation of specific programs.

The Parties will meet biennially to discuss progress and report periodically to the Commission. New annexes address atmospheric deposition of toxic pollutants, contaminated sediments, groundwater, and nonpoint sources of pollution. Annexes are also added to incorporate the development and implementation of remedial action plans for Areas of Concern and lakewide management plans to control critical pollutants.

The Commission monitors and assesses progress under the Agreement and advises Governments on matters related to the quality of the boundary waters of the Great Lakes system. The Agreement also calls upon the Commission to assist the Governments with joint programs under the Agreement, and provides for two binational boards -- the Great Lakes Water Quality Board and the Great Lakes Science Advisory Board -- to advise the Commission.


Revised

Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement of 1978

Agreement, with Annexes and Terms of Reference
between the United States and Canada signed at Ottawa November 22, 1978
and Phosphorus Load Reduction Supplement signed October 16, 1983

as amended by Protocol signed November 18, 1987 Office Consolidation
INTERNATIONAL JOINT COMMISSION UNITED STATES AND CANADA

September, 1989

PROTOCOL AMENDING THE 1978 AGREEMENT BETWEEN THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA AND CANADA ON GREAT LAKES WATER QUALITY, AS AMENDED ON OCTOBER 16, 1983

AGREEMENT BETWEEN CANADA AND THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA ON GREAT LAKES QUALITY, 1978

Article

  1. Definitions
  2. Purpose
  3. General Objectives
  4. Specific Objectives
  5. Standards, Other Regulatory Requirements, and Research
  6. Programs and Other Measures
  7. Powers, Responsibilities and Functions of the IJC
  8. Joint Institutions and Regional Office
  9. Submission and Exchange of Information
  10. Consultation and Review
  11. Implementation
  12. Existing Rights and Obligations
  13. Amendment
  14. Entry Into Force and Termination
  15. Supersession

Annex

  1. Specific Objectives
  2. Remedial Action Plans and Lakewide Management Plans
  3. Control of Phosphorus
  4. Discharges of Oil and Hazardous Polluting Substances from Vessels
  5. Discharges of Vessel Wastes
  6. Review of Pollution from Shipping Sources
  7. Dredging
  8. Discharges from Onshore and Offshore Facilities
  9. Joint Contingency Plan
  10. Hazardous Polluting Substances
  11. Surveillance and Monitoring
  12. Persistent Toxic Substances
  13. Pollution from Non-Point Sources
  14. Contaminated Sediment
  15. Airborne Toxic Substances
  16. Pollution from Contaminated Groundwater
  17. Research and Development

Terms of Reference for the Joint Institutions and the Great Lakes Regional Office

 


Local Navigation

 

Jump to main content.