Sunday, July 18, 2021

MI issues PFAS-related consumption 'guidelines' for Lake Superior smelt

I'd say this raises more health and environmental justice issues:

When you read yet another story about PFAS chemical contamination in Great Lakes and Midwestern waters - 

Fish advisories impact tribal traditions; Lake Superior smelt the latest species found contaminated

In March, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services issued a precautionary consumption guideline for rainbow smelt from Lake Superior; the advisory came after natural resources officials in Wisconsin found and reported elevated levels of legacy chemical PFOS — perfluorooctane sulfonate — in samples of that species caught near the Apostle Islands and off of Port Wing, a shoreline city about 50 miles east of Duluth, Minnesota.

Because Indigenous people living near Lake Superior eat multitudes more than average amounts of fish, they face a choice whether to drastically limit how much they eat traditional foods to avoid poisoning — contamination that leaves the community collectively more susceptible to negative health risks associated with PFAS exposure.

- remember that Wisconsin's corporately-obeisant and Republican-led state legislature continues to enable multiple pollutants in Wisconsin waters and to reduce PFAS science, prevention and regulation

Republicans are enabling 'forever' toxins now found in Eau Claire city wells 

7/16/21 update from 7/14/21:

But wait, it gets worse, and the dirty hand of Robin Vos is involved. 

Bill Could Reduce DNR’s Regulatory Authority Over PFAS

Drafting files of the bill obtained by Wisconsin Public Radio reveal further details surrounding the intent of lawmakers behind the legislation, as well as the involvement of staff working for Assembly Speaker Robin Vos, R-Rochester. 

The files show that Vos’ staff member Jake Wolf requested language from Evers’ proposed PFAS municipal grant program, including several revisions. Those changes included reducing the area that would be eligible for funding to test for PFAS down from 3 miles to 1 mile from a contaminated site. 

The revisions also included the bill’s proposal to bar local governments from seeking additional payments for PFAS damages if they receive grant money, as well as adding language to explicitly restrict local authority to regulate PFAS. 


Lake Michigan gale
Great Lakes waves on Lake Michigan break on the Milwaukee shoreline. @James Rowen photo.


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