Lake Michigan Lakewide Action and Management Plan Program

Restoring and protecting the integrity of the Lake Michigan ecosystem through collaborative place-based partnerships.

Protecting the Great Lakes

Under the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement, the United States and Canada agreed “to restore and maintain the chemical, physical, and biological integrity of the waters of the Great Lakes basin ecosystem.” To achieve this goal, the parties agreed upon the development and implementation of Lakewide Action and Management Plans (LAMPs), in partnership with the state and provincial governments.

The Lake Michigan Watershed

Lake Michigan is the second largest Great Lake by volume and the only lake located completely within the United States. The Lake Michigan watershed basin includes the lakes open water and the area of land where the rivers and streams and groundwater all drain to the lake. The Lake Michigan drainage basin [JPG] covers more than 45,000 square miles and drains parts of four states: Wisconsin, Illinois, Michigan, and Indiana. In Indiana, portions of Lake, Porter, LaPorte, Dekalb, Elkhart, Kosciusko, LaGrange, Noble, St. Joseph, Steuben, and Whitley counties are included.

Program Goals

The LAMP envisions “a sustainable Lake Michigan ecosystem that ensures environmental integrity and that supports, and is supported by, economically viable, healthy human communities.” This overall goal is further broken down into the following 12 sub-goal questions:

  1. Can we eat any fish?
  2. Can we drink the water?
  3. Can we swim in the water?
  4. Are habitats healthy, naturally diverse, and sufficient to sustain viable biological communities?
  5. Does the public have access to abundant open space, shorelines, and natural areas, and does the public have enhanced opportunities for interaction with the Lake Michigan ecosystem?
  6. Are land use, recreation, and economic activities sustainable and supportive of a healthy ecosystem?
  7. Is there sediment, air, land, or water sources; or pathways of contamination that affect the integrity of the ecosystem?
  8. Are aquatic and terrestrial nuisance species prevented and controlled?
  9. Are ecosystem stewardship activities common and undertaken by public and private organizations in communities around the basin?
  10. Is collaborative ecosystem management the basis for decision-making in the Lake Michigan basin?
  11. Do we have enough information, data, understanding, and indicators to inform the decision-making process?
  12. What is the status of the 33 Lake Michigan sub-watersheds?

Through a collaborative effort, LAMP projects focus on meeting the program goals through monitoring the changing environmental conditions and adapting management strategies.

LAMP Reports and Updates

Lake Michigan LAMP reports are drafted by the U.S. EPA with input and wording from the states, tribes, and other federal agencies. These extensive reports provide a snapshot of the status of each sub-goal at the time the report was drafted. In between the full reports, annual updates on work around the Lake are provided. IDEM staff sit on the Management Committee and the Working Group of the LAMP Partnership and help to develop the updates and reports.

LAMP at Work in Indiana

IDEM works with many partners to address the LAMP goals and implement LAMP-related projects within the Lake Michigan basin. These partners and projects include:

Additional Information

For additional information on the LAMP Program in Indiana please contact:

Indiana Department of Environmental Management
Northwest Regional Office
330 W US HWY 30 Suite F
Valparaiso, IN 46385

  • Phone: (219) 464-0233
  • Toll Free: (888) 209-8892