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Water woes in Great Lakes could drain shipping season

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Lake Superior’s water level is more than a foot below its long-term average for this time of year, the Northland NewsCenter reports. Officials say shippers are already being forced to reduce their cargo by 10 percent.

USA Today says the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is warning shipping companies that harbors could be hazardous in all the Great Lakes.

Water levels are expected to remain below average for the next six months. Lakes Michigan and Huron set an all-time record low in January -- more than two-feet below average.

"The lack of a large snowpack during the winter of 2011 to 2012, coupled with the very hot and dry summer of 2012, are the biggest factors leading to the lower water levels this year," according to Keith Kompoltowicz, chief of watershed hydrology for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' district office in Detroit.

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