Zena Huhta is the Lake Superior Program Coordinator at the Natural Resources Department at the Keweenaw Indian Community, aka the KBIC.
Zena organizes weekly beach cleanups starting in June and continuing until the end of August.
These cleanups focus on eight different locations covering a distance up to 18 miles of waterfront.
Zena “I see the debris I see the tires I see the trash that’s in the water I see the need to have somebody dive and be able to retrieve a lot of the stuff that you know if you can’t get off the shoreline you can’t get to it.”
Last week The KBIC focused on the removal of the tires that have been dumped in or near the lake.
By noon on day two there had already been at least 2 truckloads that were taken off the KBIC Sandpoint campgrounds.
The average number of tires for each truckload is approximately 30 to 35 tires if not more tires.
The cleanup removes up to 15 lbs of garbage off these beaches weekly.
The Superior Water Shed is funding the disposal cost for this project
Zena, “This water this beautiful area here is our lifeline it’s not going to be able to be enjoyed by our future generations and I don’t even just mean enjoy but you know the quality of the water the drinking ability. “
It takes the collaboration of the full community coming together to pull off this event.
The KBIC department of public works had their crew and machinery at the campground removing tires from the shoreline,
Divers patrolled the deeper waters on the Baraga County Sheriff’s boat and the KBIC’s Conservation boat.
Zena, “This will not be the only event there’s going to be many more because there is a lot of tires and a lot of debris garbage trash that needs to be you know removed from the waters.”
For information on how to volunteer or for upcoming events, please follow the KBIC NRD Facebook page.
Michelle Duder WZMQ 19 Baraga