In the private sector, we’re pretty sophisticated about tracking progress toward our goals. That’s why it has been exciting to be part of Blue Accounting’s Advisory Committee and imagine how we can apply some of these same approaches to managing our Great Lakes water resources

Dave McLean, Business IT Director - The Dow Chemical Company and Blue Accounting Advisory Committee Member

Like a large global company with many divisions, the Great Lakes basin presents a huge challenge in coordinating work across the diverse groups working on strategies, investments and tracking progress on Great Lakes issues. We must take the data and information from all these different sources and work together to determine the right next steps together

We just wrapped up our bi-annual Advisory Committee meeting in Ann Arbor, where I joined my colleagues from the public and private sectors and members of the Blue Accounting team in putting our heads together to help this program grow, evolve and serve the Great Lakes community. We took time to celebrate Blue Accounting’s accomplishments in 2018. Countless hours of collaboration across the 75+ organizations participating in Blue Accounting’s pilot issues led to a major information release in November. On the website, you can now explore aquatic invasive species risk for locations across the basin and see how source water planning and management varies across states and provinces. 

We also took a step back and asked how these accomplishments align with our own organizations’ and stakeholders’ information needs. Blue Accounting has been progressing for the past 2.5 years. We believe that Blue Accounting’s framework for identifying and tracking progress toward shared goals is novel, but protection and management of Great Lakes water resources is a busy space. It is critical that Blue Accounting find ways to support, not duplicate, efforts such as the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement.

I look forward to seeing what we accomplish in 2019. I continue to make time to be part of this team because I know how important the lakes are: we rely on them for drinking water, industrial production, recreation, fisheries, transportation and, of course, that sense of community pride we all have around their beauty. I am thankful for the opportunity to help keep them great for future generations.

Blue Accounting AC

Blue Accounting Advisory Committee 

©Tawny Mata/The Nature Conservancy