Infographic: Climate Change in the Great Lakes

How will predicted changes to water levels and water temperatures affect the future of this region that is home to 38 million people?

Click through the interactive infographic below to learn more about how climate change will affect the economy and ecology of the Great Lakes region.

Great Lakes Climate Change Infographic

Photos © J. Carl Ganter / Circle of Blue, Infographic © Megan Capinegro and Valerie Carnevale / Ball State University for Circle of Blue
Click on the interactive infographic above to learn more about how climate change will affect the Great Lakes. Click the “Effects” tab to see environmental effects of climate change; roll over the ice, water levels, and water temperatures panels to see the effects these will have on the economy. Click the “Future” tab to see what could be in store for the region.

Source: Great Lakes Commission, International Joint Commission, Journal of Great Lakes Research, Michigan Sea Grant, NOAA, National Park Service, Natural Resources & Environment, Natural Wildlife Federation, Union of Concerned Scientists, Union of Concerned Scientists (2), U.S. Department of Transportation’s Center for Climate Change and Environmental Forecasting,

Infographic by Megan Capinegro and Valerie Carnevale, undergraduate students of Ball State University’s journalism graphics program, for Circle of Blue. Photographs by J. Carl Ganter, Traverse City-based director of Circle of Blue.

3 replies
  1. Noah Hall says:

    Thanks for the posting this. However, the graphic seems to be based on older studies that predicted lower lake levels from climate change. The most recent modeling paints a very different picture – lake levels staying about the same, or perhaps slight increases. Check out and

    Why did Circle of Blue use the older studies and not the best current research?

    Noah Hall

  2. Aubrey Parker says:

    Among other climate-related issues, the graphic reports potential effects of lower lake levels on transportation and on the food chain. In preparing this graphic, Circle of Blue interviewed top scientists and used the best available data. As was reported in Keith Schneider’s article on ports and shipping companies, scientists have no clear consensus and predictions differ on the effects of climate change to lake levels.

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply