Top Products for the Great Lakes

Funding for this project was received through President Obama’s Great Lakes Restoration Initiative.


Great Lakes Environmental Response Management Application – Use this online mapping tool to find data for coastal pollution cleanup, restoration, and response efforts.

Great Lakes Water Level Dashboard – Visualize and access monthly Great Lakes water level data and forecasts across a variety of time scales.

Lake Level Viewer (U.S. Great Lakes) – This tool provides visuals and information that depict potential lake level changes and impacts.

Land Cover Atlas – This online data viewer provides user-friendly access to regional land cover and land cover change information.

Current Projects

Lake Michigan Coastal Resilience Initiative – This project will provide technical and contract support aimed at building capacity among Great Lakes cities to strengthen coastal resilience and respond to challenges such as shoreline erosion, flooding, and increasingly frequent severe storm events. Phase 1 will result in four workshops to be held with municipal and natural resource managers across the Lake Michigan basin. The focus of the workshops will be to identify site-specific project work, and educate local officials on resources, tools, best practices, and engineering options for implementing sustainable solutions to disturbances in coastal areas. NOAA will offer coastal training through in-kind support as a precursor and complement to planning and execution of the workshops. Each workshop will result in a detailed report of the discussion and information garnered. A prioritized list of coastal restoration projects will be developed, along with a list of data gaps if they exist, for each project identified during the workshops. Phase 2 will focus on selecting a suite of municipal-scale projects that will demonstrate sustainable approaches for cities experiencing acute coastal problems. Engineering and design plans (e.g., 60-80% construction-ready status plans) will be developed for a minimum of two sites (more plans will be developed if money allows). Project partners will prioritize project selection based on a number of factors to be determined by the project team and primary partners.

To learn more about this project, view this recorded webinar.

Manoomin Restoration in Lake Superior – This project will provide technical assistance to determine restoration efforts for wild rice and monitor its current distribution within Lake Superior coastal wetlands. NOAA will work with Lake Superior’s coastal tribal communities by providing six potential sites, distributed across the basin, for evaluation within tribal coastal wetlands. These pilot locations will serve as a foundation for future work.

Wisconsin Point Dune Restoration Project – This project will eliminate or restore parking turnouts and beach access points along Wisconsin Point that have led to dune deterioration. Additionally, the project will address shoreline erosion along Allouez Bay.

Urban Watershed Runoff Project – The project supports two coastal communities working to redevelop waterfront industrial land with the goal of integrating green infrastructure into smart growth and waterfront redevelopment activities.

Illinois Beach State Park Project – This project will collect and process geospatial data to show erosion rates for beach and nearshore areas, as well as the ecosystem value of various habitats within the park. By pairing these data with information on processes such as lake level fluctuations and storms, managers will be able to identify locations and nearshore restoration strategies within the park for habitat protection.


A Guide to Assessing Green Infrastructure Costs and Benefits for Flood Reduction – Follow this six-step approach to assess green infrastructure costs and benefits for flood reduction in your community.

Coastal and Estuarine Land Conservation Program in the Great Lakes – This program provides matching funds to state and local governments to purchase threatened coastal and estuarine lands or obtain conservation easements. Find out more about the program.

Ecological Limits of Hydrologic Alteration Project – This project developed criteria for land and water management to sustain healthy aquatic ecosystems through the completion of a flow-ecology model analysis of Minnesota tributaries in the Lake Superior basin.

Economic Assessment – Learn about the economic benefits of green infrastructure and find information on a suite of stormwater management practices.

Great Lakes Elevation Data – View elevation data for parts of Lake Superior, and then explore the U.S. Interagency Elevation Inventory for data available from other sources.

Great Lakes Land Cover Change Report – See how the Great Lakes coastal region has changed from 1996 to 2010 with this presentation of key findings.

Great Lakes Partnership Case Study – Learn how collaboration can aid in climate change and resilience planning.

Great Lakes Resilience Planning Guide – Discover resources on hazards and climate change to help communicate these coastal issues.

Land Cover Change Report – Discover how the Lake Michigan Basin has changed from 1985 to 2010 with this presentation of key findings.

Stories from the Field – Read about Great Lakes projects that used Digital Coast data, tools, and resources to get the job done. Explore “Focus Area” categories to learn more.

Technical Reports – Find reports on using a needs assessment to plan for climate change and adapting to climate change in the Great Lakes Basin.