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UPDATE: Building the Great Lakes commons at the Blue Mountain Center

[[{“type”:”media”,”view_mode”:”media_large”,”fid”:”1932″,”attributes”:{“class”:”media-image alignright size-medium wp-image-10886″,”typeof”:”foaf:Image”,”style”:””,”width”:”240″,”height”:”180″,”title”:”img01999-20111002-1720″,”alt”:””}}]]Council of Canadians chairperson Maude Barlow, Great Lakes campaigner Emma Lui and I are at the Blue Mountain Center – near the Hamlet of Blue Mountain Lake in New York state – this weekend to meet with US groups Food & Water Watch and On The Commons to discuss collaborative work on realizing the Great Lakes as a commons, public trust, and protected bio-region.

It is hoped that this planning weekend will lead to:

– a speaking tour taking place in Great Lakes communities in Canada and the US to promote local organizing and a commons framework

– a Great Lakes as a commons declaration/ social charter that would be endorsed by individuals, groups, etc.

– a commons resolution that could be passed by municipalities around the Great Lakes and beyond (similar to the Blue Communities Project)

– a shared website that would be the source of information and ways to action to protect the Great Lakes

– a sustained collaborative effort among the groups here this weekend and with many others who share a vision of the Great Lakes as a commons, public trust and protected bio-region.

There also continues to be the discussion that within two years time a Great Lakes commons congress/ conference could take place.

And – as noted in Barlow’s ‘Our Great Lakes Commons‘ paper – there is the longer-term goal of seeing “a full treaty between Canada and the United States that declares the Great Lakes to be a lived commons, public trust and protected bio-region, one that is also adopted by states, provinces and First Nations of the Basin.”

To read ‘Our Great Lakes Commons: A People’s Plan to Protect the Great Lakes Forever‘, please click here.

For more on the Council of Canadians campaign to defend the Great Lakes, click here.