An official website of the United States government.

Due to a lapse in appropriations, EPA websites will not be regularly updated. In the event of an environmental emergency imminently threatening the safety of human life or where necessary to protect certain property, the EPA website will be updated with appropriate information. Please note that all information on the EPA website may not be up to date, and transactions and inquiries submitted to the EPA website may not be processed or responded to until appropriations are enacted.

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The Great Lakes

The Great Lakes form the largest surface freshwater system on Earth. More than 30 million people live in the Great Lakes basin, and the impact of their daily activities, from the water consumed to the waste returned, directly affects the Great Lakes environment. EPA leads U.S. efforts to restore and maintain the quality and ecosystems of the Great Lakes watershed.