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Great Lakes Conservation

What is the Triple Bottom Line?

Often referred to as "People, Planet and Profit" or "Economy, Ecology, and Society," the Triple Bottom Line or TBL is the place where corporate and societal (and ecological) interests intersect. It is a new way to measure the bottom line — where profits go side-by-side with environmental and social performance — and illuminating  the way to understanding the lose concept of "sustainability."

The Great Waters Initiative incorporates TBL into a tourism model for the eastern Upper Peninsula.  By attracting tourists to the eastern UP and creating awareness around the idea of "protecting what you're enjoying," the economy is sustained and the environment gets protected.

Can it really be this simple?  See for yourself.  Visit for more information.

The Superior Watershed Partnership collaborated with Northern Initiatives on this effort to promote nature-based tourism in the eastern UP.  The SWP played an integral role in developing the tools for businesses to become more "green."  Below you will find the outcomes of this collaboration.

The Conservation Program of Great Waters

For Businesses:  The Green Business Program

Conserve Water and Energy with some significant but simple steps.

The Superior Watershed Partnership has developed the Doing Our Part Checklist for hotels to take simple measures to conserve water and energy, reduce, reuse, and recycle waste, and create an overall GREEN place to stay in the U.P.

What is Doing Our Part? Read the Doing Our Part FAQ.

"Market research shows that 87% of people would be more likely to chose a "green" hotel over a "non green" establishment."

Hotels and motels investing in energy efficient lighting upgrades can expect to yield a profit of $6.27 for every dollar spent. Now that's worth looking in to!

Please call our office if you're interested in participating in our Green Business Program. We will send you a checklist to fill out and send back. If you are doing 10 or more of the simple steps (or plan to), you will be awarded with a certificate saying "you're officially a Great Waters Green Business" and a sticker for your front window.

Or just download the Doing Our Part Green Checklist.

In addition, we have a Linen/Towel Reuse Program for hotels. If you sign up for the program you will receive towel tents and pillow cards for the number of rooms in your establishment. Give us a call to find out more!

For Tourists:  While you're visiting why not help up "protect what you're enjoying!"

Our mission at the Superior Watershed Partnership is to protect Lake Superior, Lake Michigan, and Lake Huron, watershed by watershed. We can only do so much with a staff of 6 from our Marquette office. We have over 20 Watershed Councils UP-wide working to help keep our water protected, but as a tourist and visitor to the UP you could help us to! Where are you traveling? Might you be crossing over a river or a stream? Let us know! If you have a moment grab a pen and paper, your digital camera and your family. We want to know what you see there. Take a picture. What stream are you looking at? Tell us about the condition of the stream. Is there a lot of sediment on the bottom? How clear is the water? Is there a culvert? In what shape is the culvert. Don't just take one picture; take several to document the crossing from many angles. The following 4 forms will help you collect data and then you can automatically submit your observations.

Don't want to get so technical?

Then just tell us about your experience. What did you see in the places you went? Did you see a black bear crossing the road? A wolf? Did you get a picture? Was there a particular hiking trail you enjoyed? A particular waypoint? Share it with us using the forms below.

We want businesses in the UP to support watershed protection!

View the decals available for businesses to display in their windows showing they care about the UP's watersheds. The decals are currently available to businesses that have adopted a conservation policy and are doing their part to protect the watersheds of the UP.

View a map of the watersheds of the U.P. here: UP Watersheds.

For more information on Great Waters visit

Northern Initiatives and the SWP partnered with Great Lakes Center for Youth Development to integrate a youth component to the Great Waters Program.

The result is a collection of youth-produced skideshows that capture the authentic voice of young people about the places in the U.P. that are special to them.