U.S. Representative Judy Biggert (R-IL-13) today issued the following statement after state and federal officials confirmed that a single Bighead Asian carp had been found above the electric anti-carp barrier system in Lake Calumet, approximately six miles downstream of Lake Michigan:
"Today's find confirms that the rigorous sampling efforts of our environmental managers are working. But the fact that months of collection and fish kills have yielded only a single fish confirms that no self-sustaining, breeding population of Asian carp has reached beyond the barrier system to threaten Lake Michigan. We should view this find in light of its scientific significance, and not allow the successful efforts of our environmental managers to be distorted by those who think the only answer to the carp situation is closing our locks and shutting down Chicago's waterways and commerce. The Army Corps of Engineers has studied lock closure and shown it to be an ineffective answer more likely to kill jobs than stop carp.
"Our environmental managers should be commended for their hard work, especially as they now redouble their efforts by adding additional netting and electro-fishing crews in the Chicago-area waterways. With additional bypass barrier work underway, I'm confident we will find the best way forward in protecting the Great Lakes from the invasive Asian carp without harming our local economy."