No fish for you!


I live in NW Indiana. Indiana probably brings to mind corn and flat land but there is more than that here. Southeastern Indiana has the beautiful Clifty Falls State Park while northwestern Indiana in on the shore of Lake Michigan. Lake Michigan, for those who don't know, is on the of the five Great Lakes. These lakes hold 1/5th of the entire world's fresh water and provide drinking water to tens of millions of people in the US and Canada. They also provide recreation and tourism to people around the world. Unfortunately, the health and beauty of these natural wonders is being threatened

PCBs and mercury are contaminants that collect in soil, water, and microscopic animals. Mercury goes up the food chain as the these microscopic animals are eaten by larger animals and those animals eaten by larger ones and so on. PCBs mainly reside in the fat of a fish but mercury is bound to the muscle, the part of the fish we eat. This is a definite concern for those who fish in Lake Michigan. One tributary to the lake, the Grand Calumet River, is so polluted that the state of Indiana says not to eat any fish from it. Period. Lake Michigan itself has many other fish that are so full of mercury or PCBs that pregnant women and children under the age of 15 are told not to eat them and the rest of the population is told to only eat once every month or two. (2010 Indiana Fish Consumption Advisory Complete Report)

The pollution of Lake Michigan is a concern for the surrounding states. The water in it is retained for 99 years. What was dumped years ago is still there. What we dump now will be there long after we are gone. So what can one do? There are some groups, including the Sierra Club, who offer ways we can help. Here are some links to them:

Sierra Club Great Lakes Program

Alliance for the Great Lakes

National Wildlife Federation