Partnering to Protect Our Waterways

Cleveland-Cliffs began working with the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) in late 2020 after significantly increasing our presence and commitment in the Great Lakes region. We are engaged in ongoing efforts for three NFWF programs – Sustain Our Great Lakes, the Chi-Cal Rivers Fund and the Southeast Michigan Resilience Fund.

In these public-private partnerships, we collaborate with other funders and public agencies with shared interest in Great Lakes sustainability, including the U.S. EPA, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the U.S. Forest Service. By working together, we maximize our dollars and our impact for large-scale environmental improvements across the Great Lakes basin and in our Great Lakes communities.

Key outcomes of these programs to date include:

  • 2,288 miles of fish passage restored
  • 46,000 acres of coastal and riparian habitat restored
  • 251 million gallons of additional stormwater storage created
  • 52,000 trees planted



With support from the Sustain Our Great Lakes program, Minnesota Land Trust staff maintain a submerged net used as a barrier to prevent carp from disturbing seeded wild rice beds prior to germination in the St. Louis River Estuary.