Lake Huron

About Lake Huron

Lake Huron is the third largest of the lakes by volume, with 850 cubic miles of water. The Huron lakeshore extends 3,827 miles, and is characterized by shallow, sandy beaches and the rocky shores of Georgian Bay. The lake measures 206 miles across and 183 miles north to south, with an average depth of 195 feet (approximately 750 feet, maximum).

Lake Huron’s drainage area, which covers parts of Michigan and Ontario, is relatively large compared to the other Great Lakes. It’s more than twice the size of Huron’s approximately 23,000 square miles of surface water. The Saginaw River basin is intensively farmed and contains the Flint and Saginaw-Bay City metropolitan areas.

Lake Huron is hydrologically inseparable from Lake Michigan, joined by the wide Straits of Mackinac.

Partners working together

In addition to being part of a large, complex system, each Great Lake possesses unique attributes that warrant specifically tailored approaches to restoration and protection. A key mechanism for identifying priorities and coordinating restoration actions at a lake basin scale are Lakewide Action and Management Plans (LAMPs). LAMPs are plans of action to assess, restore, protect and monitor the ecosystem health of each Great Lake and its connecting river system. They provide a mechanism to coordinate the efforts of government and nongovernmental partners working to improve the lake's ecosystem.

LAMPs are called for in the Lakewide Management Annex of the 2012 Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement. Under this binational agreement, Canada and the United States have committed to: “contribute to the achievement of the General and Specific Objective of this Agreement by assessing the status of each Great Lake, and by addressing environmental stressors that adversely affect the Waters of the Great Lakes which are best addressed on a lakewide scale through an ecosystem approach.”

LAMPs are established for each of the five Great Lakes and their connecting river systems, as follows:

The Lake Huron LAMP, 2017-2021, was developed by members of the Lake Huron Partnership, a collaborative team of natural resource managers led by the governments of Canada and the U.S., in cooperation and consultation with state and provincial governments; tribal governments, First Nations and Métis; municipal governments, and watershed management agencies. The LAMP fulfills the binational commitment to assess ecosystem condition, identify environmental threats, set priorities for research and monitoring, and identify further actions to be taken by governments and the public that address the key threats to the waters of Lake Huron and the St. Marys River.

What we do

Blue Accounting is an information service to track the region’s progress toward shared goals for the Great Lakes. Maintained by the Great Lakes Commission, the information developed by Blue Accounting helps elected officials make sure that policies and programs are effective at protecting the largest fresh surface water system on earth.

What we measure

The Great Lakes Commission’s Blue Accounting team works with experts to identify goals and methods to track progress on key Great Lakes issues. Currently, Blue Accounting is tracking progress on protecting the region from aquatic invasive species and keeping phosphorus out of Lake Erie.