Huffpost Chicago

Asian Carp: White House Summit Begins Week Of Activity

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A week of activity on the impending Asian carp crisis kicks off Monday with a meeting at the White House.

Nancy Sutley, the president's top environmental adviser, is hosting a meeting with three Great Lakes governors to discuss strategies for dealing with the carp. Illinois Governor Pat Quinn was unable to travel to Washington due to the storm there, Chicago Breaking News reports. But Governors Jennifer Granholm of Michigan and Jim Doyle of Wisconsin will be there in person, and Quinn will participate by phone.

The Asian carp are invasive species of fish that consume a great deal, grow rapidly and reproduce en masse. Many fear that if they enter the Great Lakes ecosystem, they could push out all native species of fish, an environmental disaster that would also cripple the region's $8 billion fishing industry.

Asian carp DNA has been found in Lake Michigan, but so far no specimen have been located there.

Last week, a group of lawmakers led by Illinois Senator Dick Durbin approved $20 million in additional funding for measures to fight the carp. Monday's meeting is expected to produce strategies for using these funds.

Later this week, lawmakers will consider a bill on the Asian carp in the House; Great Lakes attorneys general will meet with the Department of Justice; the US EPA will host a discussion on Asian carp in Chicago; and the Supreme Court may rule on a plea for action from Michigan.