March 20, 2018, Vol. 24, No. 14

When Will Fish Consumption Advisories No Longer Be Needed in the Great Lakes?

Ice Fishing 201801090015

Mercury, polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) compounds, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and persistent organic pollutants (POPs) make their way into Great Lakes fish. Chronic exposure is a problem for Indigenous communities.

Not many people think about fish consumption advisories. If they do, it’s a quick glance at a map, a sobering reminder that invisible pollutants are still among us, a sideways look at a can of tuna, and then move on. But not all people have the luxury of occasionally eating smoked fish at a tourist stop and not considering contaminants in their food. Especially for fish-reliant tribal communities around the Great Lakes, fish consumption advisories are tied to present and future balancing acts around food choice. Eliminating the need for fish consumption advisories requires coordinated action at regional, national and international scales. Read more.