Even in Alaska: Fish Harvest Closed on Fairbanks Lakes Due to PFAS

Home States Even in Alaska: Fish Harvest Closed on Fairbanks Lakes Due to PFAS

(Fairbanks) – The Alaska Department of Fish and Game is continuing the restrictions on Bathing Beauty Pond and Kimberly, Bear, Moose, and Polaris lakes, effective 12:01 a.m. Wednesday, January 27, 2021. Sport fishing at Kimberly Lake remains closed. For Bathing Beauty Pond and Bear, Moose, and Polaris Lakes, all fish species caught may not be retained and must be released immediately (catch-and-release only).

 

In 2019, surface water in Kimberly Lake tested to exceed EPA and DEC actions levels of 70 parts per trillion (ppt) for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), in addition, rainbow trout caught in Kimberly Lake had nearly 2,000 times the amount of PFAS than that found in the surface water. As a precautionary measure, Kimberly Lake will remain closed to sport fishing.

 

Water quality testing conducted in Polaris, Bear and Moose Lakes on Eielson Airforce Base indicated that surface waters from all three lakes exceeded EPA and DEC lifetime health advisory levels of 70 ppt for PFAS. Results from water quality testing at Bathing Beauty Pond, in the summer of 2020, indicated that per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) levels were below EPA and DEC action levels (21–26 ppt). However, these concentrations can result in the bioaccumulation of PFAS in fish tissues to levels that may be unsafe for consumption. Therefore, Bathing Beauty Pond and Bear, Moose, and Polaris Lakes are being restricted to catch-and-release fishing out of an abundance of caution.

 

Fortunately, there are dozens of lakes in the Fairbanks area that provide the opportunity to harvest fish. Anglers can reference pages 41-42 of the department’s Northern Alaska Sport Fishing Regulation Summary for a listing of the stocked lakes in the Tanana River drainage or call the Fairbanks office of ADF&G at (907) 459-7207 for information on fishing opportunities in the Fairbanks area.

 

For additional information contact Heather Scannell, Tanana Area Management Biologist, (907) 459-7357.

 

For information specific to ground and surface water contaminants, please contact the Department of Environmental Conservation or visit their website at Contaminated Sites (alaska.gov).