Carp Barrier Finished For Years, Never Activated

A $9 million electric Asian carp barrier built to keep these enormous invasive fish out of the Great Lakes was completed in 2006. But it was never turned on because of confusion over what agencies have jurisdiction over the project. I covered this story in 2005, when it looked like a solution was just about finished (see Electrical Barrier To Keep Asian Carp Out Of Great Lakes for more pictures and details).

Asian carp, which weigh up to 100 pounds, were imported into the US for use as bottom feeders in catfish farm ponds in the lower Mississippi. The carp found their way into the Mississippi when the river flooded (who could have predicted that?) in the 1990's. Now they're moving north.

The only path that the carp have to the Great Lakes is an artificial waterway called the Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal. The electric barrier is a system of underwater electrodes that should prevent the fish from migrating up the canal.


(Asian carp barrier location map)

Wildlife biologists fear for the Great Lakes fish species that will perish when out-competed for resources by the Asian carp. The Coast Guard, the Army Corps of Engineers and other agencies are concerned about the high voltage electrodes, particularly if volatile cargoes like gasoline are transiting on the surface of the canal.

Last week, a letter from 29 US senators and representatives and another letter from the eight Great Lakes governors moved the Coast Guard to agree to turn the barrier on - but only at quarter-strength. Wildlife biologists don't think this will be enough, and the Coast Guard doesn't want it turned up higher. Impasse again.

The Great Lakes have enough problems without giant carp added to the mix. I find it incredible that this $9 million project was completed and yet it cannot be utilized. Carp have been sighted within fifty miles of the barrier;

Science fiction author Roger Zelazny wrote a series of excellent stories published as My Name is Legion in 1976. One of them is set in a marine park in Florida. The park is divided into four separate areas by sonic curtains, which are described as a "sound barrier" that protects the species in the park. Each sonic curtain is controlled by a switches on the bottom; in an unusual touch, dolphins in the park teach each other how to use the controls so they can move freely.

Read many more details at The Tribune.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 12/18/2008)

Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.

| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |

Would you like to contribute a story tip? It's easy:
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add it here.

Comment/Join discussion ( 3 )

Related News Stories - (" Biology ")

Monkey Gets A Bigger Brain, Thanks To Human Gene
'It's a madhouse! a madhouse!' - Planet of the Apes, 1968.

Mushroom Coffin Returns You To Nature, Naturally
'She touched the leaf. She was wanted.' - Philip K Dick, 1954.

Mechanical Milking Of Microalgae For Fuel Production
'They call 'em culture tanks. They have bugs -- germs -- growing in them.' - Hal Clement, 1950.

Fetal Lamb Rests In Artificial Womb
'... stewing warm on their cushion of peritoneum and gorged with blood-surrogate and hormones, the foetuses grew and grew...' - Aldous Huxley, 1932.

 

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

 

Current News

Flatcat Robot Recalls Both Heinlein And Simak
Sorry, you'll need to read the article.

Nuclear Batteries May Pack Inner Punch
'... the most super-valuable substance in the solar system.'

Elon Musk STILL Wants To Make Heinlein's 1940's Speedster
'As she neared the barrier the car surged and lifted...'

Mercury Capsule Ablative Shielding
'...a synthetic which air-friction would erode away.'

Heinlein And Russian Quail In Orbit
'No earth-hatched bird can learn to fly in that fashion...'

Listen Up, Coppertop - Wearable Device Turns You Into A Battery
'It's our way or the highway.'

Solar Powered Robot Cleans Up Solar Panels For Free
'... with large padded feet, who were apparently polishing their way the whole length of Rama's six artificial suns.'

Spot Arm From Boston Dynamics Picks Up Like Heinlein's Hired Girl Robot
'Anything larger than a BB shot it picked up and placed in a tray on its upper surface...'

Electric Vehicle Prices Will Drop To $2,890
'the human seats took up two-thirds of the room in each'

TIGER Ultimate Mobility Vehicle From Hyundai
'He admired the fast-plodding, articulated legs...'

Drones Communicate With Each Other Using Quantum Encryption
'the curious absent look of a robot talking on the TBR circuits...'

Space Construction Tools For Large Structures By OAC
'Mass-produced in the orbiting factories...'

SpinCare Electrospins And Shoots Wound Dressing
'Over her lacerated right shoulder he sprayed art-derm...'

Tesla Model S And X Moves Toward KITT Knight Rider Styling
Now, that was a Pontiac Trans Am with some real style.

Sophia Robots By The Thousands
'There is a built-in microphone that hears everything you say, and an electric brain that selects a suitable answer.'

Scaly-Foot Snail Works With Iron
'Micro-Scale suit tiles fabricated by genetically engineered metal affinity bacteria...'

More SF in the News Stories

More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.