May 31, 2006

IJC seeks public comment on Lake Ontario-St. Lawrence River Study

The International Joint Commission will hold a 60-day public comment period on the report of its International Lake Ontario-St. Lawrence River Study Board, which was released today.

The Study Board report presents the Commission with options for regulating the outflows from Lake Ontario through the international hydropower project at Cornwall, Ontario and Massena, New York. The five-year study improves the understanding of how regulation affects the environment, recreational boating, flooding, shoreline erosion, navigation, hydropower production and municipal and industrial water uses from Niagara Falls, New York and Ontario to Trois-Rivières, Quebec.

The Commission will consider changes to the current regulation plan, Plan 1958-D, and to its Orders of Approval for regulation of Lake Ontario outflows.

The public is invited to provide comments on the Study Board report, and any other relevant matters, to assist the Commission in its deliberations. Copies of the Study Board report are available from the Commission at the addresses below, or online from

Comments, which must be received by July 31, 2006, can be submitted online at or sent by letter, fax or email to either address below:

U.S. Section Secretary
International Joint Commission
1250 23rd Street NW, Suite 100
Washington, DC 20440

Tel: (202) 736-9024
Fax: (202) 467-0746
Canadian Section Secretary
International Joint Commission
234 Laurier Avenue West, 22nd Floor
Ottawa, ON K1P 6K6

Tel: (613) 947-1420
Fax: (613) 993-5583

Once the Commission has adequately considered the Study Board report, public comment and any other relevant information, it will release a "draft decision" on regulation of Lake Ontario outflows for public comment. The Commission will examine increasing the benefits of regulation consistent with its responsibility under the Boundary Waters Treaty to ensure suitable and adequate protection of all interests that could be injured as a result of the activities that it approves.

The Commission will also hold public hearings, and consult with the governments of Canada and the United States to seek their concurrence, before making a decision whether to change its Orders of Approval or the current regulation plan. The times and locations will be announced.

Comments provided in writing or orally will become part of a public record that may be posted on the IJC's website or otherwise made available to the public. To protect the privacy of any person submitting comment, the IJC will remove the following identifying information from the incoming communication before making the comment available to the public: email address, street address, post office box, zip code, postal code, telephone number and fax number. The following identifying information will remain part of the record that is made available to the public: name, organizational affiliation, city, and state/province.

The International Joint Commission was established under the Boundary Waters Treaty of 1909 to help the United States and Canada prevent and resolve disputes over the use of the waters the two countries share. Its responsibilities include considering applications for projects that affect the natural levels and flows of boundary waters, such as the international hydropower project in the St. Lawrence River. If it approves a project, the Commission's Orders of Approval may require that the flows through the project meet certain conditions to protect interests in both countries. For more information, visit the Commission's website at


Frank Bevacqua (202) 736-9024
(613) 947-1420


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