Is the water really rising?

Climate change worriers have a new tool intended to advance their argument – but it may not be as pleasing as they hope.

The University of Michigan and an independent research group have developed an interactive map designed, according to The Associated Press, “to help local officials in the Great Lakes region deal with climate change.”

One concern, of course, is rising water levels in seas, oceans and large inland bodies of water such as the Great Lakes. Some analysts assure us that warmer temperatures are melting polar ice and thereby increasing water levels.

Just one problem with that: It isn’t happening in the Great Lakes.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has a good tool to measure long-term change in the lakes – water level gauges that have been standardized since 1860.

According to the NOAA, the average level of Lake Erie in 1860 was 174.69 meters. Last year the average was 174.13 meters – slightly lower, but in keeping with long-term trends. The other Great Lakes are similar – slightly lower, not higher, since 1860.