Great Lakes News

Great Lakes News

"Algae, Pipelines and More" Marks Legal Institute of the Great Lakes' 15th Annual Conference


On Friday, the Legal Institute of the Great Lakes (LIGL) at the University of Toledo College of Law will host its 15th annual Great Lakes Water Conference. The day-long conference on November 6 features three panels of speakers along the theme of “Algae, Pipelines and More.”

Events kick off early with words from the keynote speaker and Toledo native, U.S. Representative Marcy Kaptur. The first panel, the “Algae” panel, will discuss various legal solutions to harmful algae blooms that grow in Lake Erie over the summer. A little over a year ago, algal blooms in Lake Erie produced elevated levels of a toxin in the public water supply in the Toledo area, leaving almost half a million people without drinking water.

The “Pipelines” panel, which will feature executives from FLOW, the Marathon Petroleum Company, and the Pipeline Safety Trust, will dissect the pros, cons, and challenges of the United States’ network of petroleum pipes that runs through the Great Lakes Region. Many pipelines lie near freshwater resources, and ruptures can have catastrophic events, such as the region’s largest oil spill five years ago in the Kalmazoo River.

The final panel for the day, the “More Hot Topics” panel, will cover three additional legal developments in the region. Specifically, the panel will walk through a new provision of the Clean Water Act, an Ohio Supreme Court decision impacting impaired waters, and Waukesha’s proposed diversion of water out of the Great Lakes basin.

The conference is free and open to the public. To find out more about this year and previous conferences, visit