Kalamazoo River Superfund settlement Ken Yonker posted 3 years ago
Message:Lake Allegan Members- the public comment period for the 245 million dollar settlement for the Kalamazoo River clean up has been extended through Mid - Feb. 2020. This/below is my submitted comment. I believe anyone that consumed fish from Lake Allegan and became ill with PCB effects should be financially assisted by the superfund monies. Until Aug. 2018, the posted signs told citizens it was safe to eat the fish. Michigan's "Eat Safe Fish" website told just the opposite information. It took Valley Supervisor Ron Remington and I about half a year to have this addressed. Citizens still have about a week to send in a suggestion to the DOJ if they wish.
Assistant Attorney General, Environment Natural Resources Division,referring to: United States of America and the State of Michigan v. NCR Corporation,D.J. Ref. No. 90-11-2-07912/11
In the Federal Register / Vol.85, No. 3 (Jan. 6, 2020 notices) it instructs the public that there has been an extension for public comments for the settlement of the case referenced above. The following is my comment.
In the Kalamazoo River basin there were approximately fifty signs installed (at the most visible places) that were part of the superfund program. That superfund sign information was printed on the bottom of the signs. The signs are estimated to be in excess of thirty years old containing information known at that time. The signs indicated that in various river areas that most fish species (except carp/northern pike/ bass) were safe to eat by anyone, at any time, and in any quantity as a result of low PCB levels in the fish. This information, for many years, is/was decades outdated and actually resulted in citizens consuming fish that were determined to be toxic with PCB contamination. For months in 2018, Valley township citizens and Valley township government expressed safety concerns about this inaccurate signage to many groups (examples- MDNR, MDEQ/now EGLE, GLRI, Michigan Steelheaders, Gun Lake Tribe, Kalamazoo River Watershed Counsel, USFWS, EPA, Federal and State Legislators, etc.). Many reasons were given why the incorrect signage could not be removed and/ or replaced promptly.Current information available states that even one meal of the PCB toxic fish can create health problems (even death) for a lifetime. One or many groups did not provide proper follow through on this concern.I believe part of the settlement should include funding for those citizens that feel they may have PCB negative health effects from consuming toxic fish (in this superfund site) when superfund signing indicated it was safe to consume fish in the superfund site. The funding should provide for testing and treatment. I cannot recommend a funding level. I also feel Valley Township government and Township citizens should be recognized for moving this safety issue forward to a result of the August 2018 replacement of the incorrect signage.Ken Yonker