Current Projects

The following projects have been selected to receive support from Michigan Sea Grant. The research will be completed between 2014 and 2016. The next RFP for research projects will be released in 2015.


Ongoing Projects

The following projects are still ongoing. The research was initially performed between 2012 and 2014, with final reports expected by late 2014 or early 2015.

Expanding Michigan’s Aquaculture into a Sustainable Seafood Industry

Aquaculture has grown tremendously on a global scale in recent decades and now meets nearly half the world’s seafood demand. Michigan has the potential to support a vibrant aquaculture industry. However, commercial aquaculture development in Michigan has been stagnant since 1991.This project is designed to identify and address the current underdeveloped aquaculture industry in Michigan. The research team will ultimately develop a Strategic Action Plan for expanding the state’s current commercial aquaculture program into a major sustainable seafood industry.

Project number: R/AQ-1
Christopher Weeks, Michigan State University
Project Web Page | Fact Sheet (PDF)

Assessing the Torch Lake Area of Concern

Torch Lake, located in the Keweenaw of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, was impacted by copper mining from the mid-1800s to the late 1960s. Because of several environmental issues such as fish tumors, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) listed Torch Lake as an Area of Concern (AOC) in 1987. After some clean up, the EPA recently reported that there was not enough information available in order to accomplish rapid remediation of the site. The research team will combine existing information with previously untapped information in order to provide a comprehensive picture of the mining and environmental history of the area, to educate and engage stakeholders and to supply material that can be used to help remediate the site where needed.

Project number: R/WQ-4
Noel R. Urban
, Michigan Technological University
Project Web Page | Fact Sheet (PDF)

Projected Climate Changes on the Grand Traverse Bay Region: An Adaptive Management Framework

Great Lakes coastal communities are already feeling the impacts of climate change and variability. The research team will examine the potential risks that climate variability and change could bring to the Grand Traverse area. The project will consist of interactive workshops and technical assessments conducted by an interdisciplinary team from Michigan State University. The team seeks to better inform stakeholders and the scientific community about the vulnerability of the Grand Traverse Bay to climate variability and change, and will begin a process of adaptive management that should ultimately improve the region’s ability to respond to and mitigate the impacts of change.

Project number: R/CCD-23
David Hyndman, Michigan State University
Project Web Page | Fact Sheet (PDF)


Michigan Sea Grant Projects

As part of the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative, Michigan Sea Grant was awarded more than $1.5 million to help restore the Great Lakes. The program is leading two projects while assisting on five others. The projects focus on endangered fish, invasive species, beach contamination, water pollution and sound boating and marina operations.

Michigan Sea Grant is leading the following projects:

  • Restoring Native Fish Habitat in the St. Clair River
    Total Funding: $1.04 million over a 2-year period
    New underwater reefs were constructed in the St. Clair River order to encourage native fish reproduction, like lake whitefish, walleye and lake sturgeon. Studies before and after construction will allow biologists to evaluate the impact of the work and improve future habitat restoration efforts. The restoration has seen early success and has led to continued restoration efforts and project funding. See: Fish Restoration in the St. Clair River
  • Green Marina Education and Outreach
    Total Funding: $478,262 over a 3-year period
    Clean Marina programs in Michigan, Ohio and Wisconsin are focusing on a plan to reduce pollution from boating and marina activities throughout the region. The project partners are working to establish uniform certification standards that can be applied to marinas throughout the Great Lakes and beyond.
    See: Green Marina Project

To learn more about these and other GLRI projects Michigan Sea Grant is participating in, see: Restoration