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5 states take Asian carp case to Supreme Court

  Business  -   POSTED: 2011/10/27 12:09

Five states asked the U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday to hear their plea for quicker federal action to prevent Asian carp and other invasive species from moving between the Great Lakes and Mississippi river watersheds.

Michigan Attorney Bill Schuette said he had filed a petition with the nation's highest court to review a ruling by the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago, which in August refused to order the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to speed up a study of how to block aquatic pathways between the two water systems.

The Corps has promised to complete its study in 2015, but Michigan and four other states in the Great Lakes region — Minnesota, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin — say that's too slow.

Large, voracious bighead and silver carp have infested the Mississippi and tributary rivers that are connected by other waterways to Lake Michigan in the Chicago area. If they become established in the lakes, some experts say the Asian invaders could gobble enough plankton to destabilize the food web and damage the region's $7 billion fishing industry.

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