This week on Points North, a decline in lake whitefish is pushing tribal commercial fishermen to the northern edge of their treaty waters. Plus, we look at test results for PFAS contamination in Michigan’s public water and meet a funk band from Boyne City.
A decline in lake whitefish is pushing some tribal commercial fishermen out of Lakes Michigan and Huron.
“There was a lot more fishermen that fished down in the lower lakes,” says Jacques LeBlanc Jr. “And then the fish just started disappearing.”
Now tribal fishermen are spending more time in Lake Superior, the only place they say they can still make a living. This has fishermen and scientists worried about whether whitefish there can withstand the extra pressure.
Last spring, the state began testing more than 1,000 public water systems for a class of chemicals known as per-and polyfluoroalkyl substances – or PFAS. All the results are now in: PFAS have shown up in 119 public water supplies and 59 school programs around the state.
Correction: in an earlier version of this episode the host said the Wurtsmith Air Force Base was in Otsego. The base is actually in Oscoda.
Some fans of The Pistil Whips say they sound better live. That’s one reason why the band’s next project is going to be a live album. They record Sunday night in Petoskey and the public is invited to join them.
Next week we’ll have a story about what it’s like to live on a northern Michigan island in the winter. We’d like to include your comments about surviving winter Up North in that show. Call and leave us a message at 231-276-4444 or email a voice memo to firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also post a comment below.