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The Great Lakes

general facts about the Lakes
The Great Lakes are a group of five large lakes on or near the United States-Canadian border. The names of the lakes are Lake Superior, Lake Michigan, Lake Huron, Lake Erie and Lake Ontario. Four of the five lakes lie on the U.S.-Canadian border; one of them, Lake Michigan, is entirely within the United States. They are the largest group of fresh water lakes on the earth and the Great Lakes-St. Lawrence system is the largest fresh-water system in the world. All of the lakes have connections with each other. St. Marys River between Lake Superior and Lake Huron, the St. Clair River between Lake Huron and Lake St. Clair, the Detroit River between Lake St. Clair and Lake Erie, and the Niagara River and Niagara Falls between Lake Erie and Lake Ontario. Lake Michigan is connected to Lake Huron through the Straits of Mackinac. The Saint Lawrence River is the primary outlet of the Great Lakes and flows in the Atlantic Ocean. The lakes are situated in Ontario (all of the lakes but Michigan), Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan (all but Ontario), Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and New York. The area of the entire Lakes amount 244160 km2 (13 times larger than Saxony) and the maximum difference in altitude between the lakes is 150 m. The Great Lakes are the only lakes that have tides. Sprinkled throughout the lakes are the 35,000 Great Lakes islands, including Manitoulin Island in Lake Huron, the largest island in any lake on earth. Manitoulin Island is two times larger than the Vogtland. Through the winter the Lakes are frozen often. In this time the lakes are closed for ship traffic and ice breakers have to operate. The Great Lakes are an important reservoir for the water supply of Canada and the United States and the water power of them is often used in power plants. Economies in the Great Lakes area are above all tourism and the use as a transport way. In 2002, 162 million tons goods were moved on the Lakes. The most important goods are iron ore, coal, stone, grain, salt, cement and potash. The iron ore and much of the stone and coal are used in the steel industry. Since several years shipping on the lake has been on a downward trend.

Geological pre- history
The Great Lakes were formed at the end of the last ice age about 10,000 years ago. The glaciers carved basins with their movement. As the ice of the glaciers began to melt, the basins were filled up with melt water and so the Great Lakes were created. Because of the uneven nature of glacier erosion, some higher hills became Great Lakes islands.

3.1. Lake Superior
Lake Superior is the largest of North America's Great Lakes and the second largest lake on earth. Further it’s the largest freshwater lake in the world. It has an area of 82100 km2 (larger than the Czech Republic) and it contains 12232 km3 of water (that’s the volume of 3 milliards of swimming baths). It has a maximum length of 563 km (the bee- line distance of Klingenthal to Copenhagen) and maximum width of 257 km (the bee- line distance of Klingenthal to Munich). The maximum depth of the lake amounts 406 m. The shoreline is 4393 km long (including islands, distance of Klingenthal to Iran). Lake Superior borders Ontario in Canada, and Minnesota, Wisconsin and Michigan in the United States of America. Lake Superior is the cleanest of the five Great Lakes because there are not so much big cities and factories at the shore like at the other lakes. Cities on the shore are e.g. Duluth, Superior and Thunder Bay. Because the lake kept it’s naturalness it is a popular place for tourists and adventurers. The area around Lake Superior is rich in mineral resources, specifically in different kinds of iron ore. The native Indians called the lake "Gichigami", that means "big water". The today’s name was given by French explorers because it was the highest in elevation of all the Great Lakes.

3.2. Lake Michigan
Lake Michigan is the 3rd largest of the Great Lakes and the only one that is entirely in the USA. It has an area of 57750 km2 (larger than Croatia), making it the fifth largest lake in the world. The lake is 494 km long (the bee- line distance of Klingenthal to Berne), 190 km wide (the bee- line distance of Klingenthal to Potsdam) and the maximum depth amounts 281 m. The lake has got a volume of 1 milliard of swimming baths. It borders Indiana, Illinois, Wisconsin and Michigan. Major cities around the lake are Chicago and Milwaukee. Because Lake Michigan is a part of the Saint Lawrence Seaway, the ship traffic on the lake is very lively. It is believed that the word "Michigan" come from the Ojibwa Indian word mishigami, meaning "great water."

3.3. Lake Huron
Lake Huron is the 2nd largest of the Great Lakes. The lake's maximum depth is 230 metres. It’s area amounts 59 600 km2 (larger than Slovakia). Also Lake Huron has got a volume of 1 milliard of swimming baths. The lake is 400 km long (the bee- line distance of Klingenthal to Düsseldorf) and 160 km wide (the bee- line distance of Klingenthal to Erfurt). Lake Huron borders Ontario in Canada and Michigan in the United States. Some bigger cities at Lake Huron’s shore are Bay City, Alpena, St. Ignace, Port Huron, Goderich and Sarnia. The lake is very rich in fish and so the fishing industry is the major branch of industry. A very interesting fact of the lake is Manitoulin Island, the world’s largest lake island. This island is situated between the Lake Proper and the Georgian Bay and lets you think that these two parts of the lake are divided. Manitoulin is with 130 km length and an area of 2 756 km2 more than two times bigger than the Vogtland or the island Rügen. The Alongkin Indians named the island after their god of nature, Manitou, but Lake Huron's name comes from early French explorers who named it based on the Huron Indians inhabiting the region.

3.4. Lake Erie
Lake Erie is the 4th largest, the shallowest and the most southern of the Great Lakes. With its 25700 km2 the lake is larger than Wales. The lake has a maximum length of 388 km (the bee- line distance of Klingenthal to Saarbrücken) and maximum width of 92 km (the bee- line distance of Klingenthal to Dresden). Lake Erie has got the volume of 130 millions of swimming baths and borders Ontario in Canada and Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania and New York in the United States. Cities around the lake are Cleveland, Toledo, Buffalo and Erie. Shipping is the most important branch of industry on Lake Erie and it’s very dangerous in stormy weather because the lake is very shallow. The ships supply the ports on Lake Erie with iron ore for the steal industry, with grain and with coal. Because of these industries at the shore the lake is one of the most polluted lakes. Lake Erie is named after the native Erie Indians who lived at the shore.

3.5. Lake Ontario
Lake Ontario is the smallest of the 5 Great Lakes. The lake has got a length of 311 km (the bee- line distance of Klingenthal to Mainz), a width of 85 km (the bee- line distance of Klingenthal to Chemnitz) and an area of 19010 km2 (larger than Saxony). In the interior of the lake could be filled with 440 million swimming baths. Lake Ontario borders Ontario in Canada and the state of New York in the United States. The biggest city at the shore is Toronto. Other cities are Mississauga and Rochester. During modern times the lake became heavily polluted from industrial chemicals. By the 1960s and 1970s the lake was dying, because lots of algae killed off large quantities of fish and left stinking rests of fish and algae along the shores. The meaning of the name came from the Iroquois word Skanadario, which means "beautiful lake" or "sparkling water".
Referat zum Thema "The Great Lakes" (Englisch)
Verschiedene Beispiele

1. general facts about the Lakes
2. Geological pre- history
3.1. Lake Superior
3.2. Lake Michigan
3.3. Lake Huron
3.4. Lake Erie
3.5. Lake Ontario

Format: Word 97- 2003 (.doc) (1362 Wörter)
11.07.2007 von unbekannt
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