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Welcome to the School of Commoning!

The School of Commoning is a growing worldwide community of people participating in the global and local commons. We support the developing commons movement, as well as interested organizations and individuals, with well-organized knowledge resources and educational programs on commoning and the commons.

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on Wed, 04/13/2011 - 01:50

Under the Compact, the eight Great Lakes states agree to adopt water-conservation plans and to abide by Compact rules for allowing and managing diversions of Great Lakes water. The Compact recognizes the lakes as a shared resource which no single state owns, but of which all states are stewards. As such, a defining feature of the Compact is its emphasis on using regional cooperation to manage the lakes as a single ecosystem.

Lake Michigan Oil and Gas Drilling: Worth the Risk?

on Wed, 04/13/2011 - 01:49

Drilling under Lake Michigan is a venture that has serious implications for the overall health and use of the take by its communities. The Lake Michigan Federation has prepared this report to help citizens understand the public, environmental and economic issues related to oil and gas drilling under Lake Michigan and offer recommendations to safeguard the lake.


on Wed, 04/13/2011 - 01:47

Do we push for the enactment of the 2005 Compact in its present form, or do we pause and consider whether this Compact meets, exceeds, or falls short of the vision to protect the life-enduring qualities of the waters, the sustenance for life, communities, the environment, human endeavor, and commerce in the Basin?

Trends in Water Privatization (Report)

on Wed, 04/13/2011 - 01:46

Confronted with daunting budget shortfalls following the recent economic downturn, various cities and towns across the country have considered cashing out their water utilities to generate revenue. But rather than ease fiscal pressures, the sale or lease of water assets would likely further weaken a locality’s long-term financial health and saddle consumers with debt.Many communities have saved money with public operation.


Priceless - The Market Myth of Water Pricing Reform (Report)

on Wed, 04/13/2011 - 01:44

Focusing solely on water pricing as the mechanism for managing demand is unfair to ratepayers and doomed to be ineffective. We must recognize the collective impacts of water use, from agricultural needs to industrial needs to home needs, and demand collective responsibility.

Water Quality Issues in the US Wine Industry Affect Small Communities

on Wed, 04/13/2011 - 01:40

As the wine industry grows in economic importance, wineries face an increasingly stringent level of scrutiny from environmentalists and government regulators. Wastewater discharge from winery operations is becoming an area of particular concern.

The Great Lakes as Bottled Water

on Wed, 04/13/2011 - 01:39

When bottled water is placed next to Coca-Cola and other sugar-laden soft drinks, it seems a positive alternative, or at least benign. But take a closer look at the process by which that small unit of ordinary water has been acquired, packaged and marketed to you – for $1.50 a bottle, say – and you begin to see how bottled water is often a deep offense against the commons.  It’s a matter of taking something that belongs to all of us, denying its ecological importance, adding some modest proprietary value and marketing sizzle, and then selling it back to us at a huge markup.

Leveraging the Great Lakes Region’s Water Assets for Economic Growth

on Wed, 04/13/2011 - 01:36

This region’s 10,000 miles of lakefront, coupled with thousands of miles of regional rivers, streams, and inland lakes are an increasingly valuable amenity: In 2007, 2.7 million jobs were linked to the waters of the Great Lakes, accounting for $150 billion in compensation. As these waters are cleaned and made available for development, recreation, and tourism, they enrich the region’s quality of life and can help stimulate economic growth.

Water Availability and Use Pilot: A Multiscale Assessment in the U.S. Great Lakes Basin

on Wed, 04/13/2011 - 01:34

The focus of this study was on collecting, compiling, and analyzing a wide variety of data to define the storage and dynamics of water resources and quantify the human demands on water in the Great Lakes region.

Risk Reduction Study Fact Sheet - Environmental DNA (eDNA)

on Wed, 04/13/2011 - 01:31

The presence of species can be detected by filtering water samples, and then extracting and amplifying short fragments of the shed DNA. In contrast to other surveillance methods, the environmental DNA (eDNA) method does not rely on direct observation of Asian carp to evaluate presence.