EPA task force meeting on saving Buffalo Reef Tuesday in Houghton County

A map shows the stamp sands project area and Buffalo Reef.

LAKE LINDEN, Mich. (WLUC) - A cooperative multi-entity task force created by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is reminding the public about a public meeting set for Tuesday, Jan. 30 in Lake Linden, on efforts to save the important lake trout and whitefish spawning areas on Buffalo Reef.

The underwater reef is threatened by shifting stamp sands, a by-product of copper milling done in the community of Gay, beginning in the early 1900s and lasting roughly 30 years.

The meeting will be 6-8 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 30, at the Lake Linden-Hubbell High School Auditorium, located at 601 Calumet Street in Lake Linden. A session previously scheduled for Dec. 5 was postponed due to inclement weather.

In addition to the Jan. 30 public meeting, an invitation-only Wednesday, Jan. 31 meeting on Buffalo Reef for EPA task force members and scientists has also been set. That session was previously scheduled for Dec. 6, but was canceled because of blizzard conditions.

The EPA formed the task force to develop a long-term plan over the next couple of years to contain and potentially reuse the stamp sands. The group will gather input from many stakeholders, including the public.

“We will be soliciting public input on what issues the plan needs to address and looking for volunteers to help us understand and resolve those issues,” said Steve Casey, a task force member representing the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality.

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