The history of White Lake in northern Muskegon County Michigan unfortunately includes pollution from a number of sources that includes, the Genesco tannery, Hooker Chemical, DuPont, municipal sewage, agricultural run-off and lawn chemicals. Protest and civil disobedience that began over thirty years ago evolved into many years of organized citizen and agency efforts that brought the situation to national attention. It was placed on the list of Areas of Concern by the International Joint Commission, a bi-national panel that oversees efforts by the U.S. and Canada to meet the terms of the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement and access to funds to begin the cleanup were made available. The lake was eventually improved through dredging, seepage intervention and habitat restoration through the persistent efforts of local citizens who gained the collaboration of elected officials. As of October 30th, 2014, based on considerable data, the EPA removed the lake from the list of Areas of Concern.
This is a giant first step in the continuing improvement and maintenance of the lake through citizen education and action.
Back in October of 2007, with the help of a friend piloting his inflatable dingy, we navigated White Lake in order for me to document the entire shoreline with good resolution still photographs to add to my stock images of this watershed.
To celebrate the recent de-listing event, I created an A/V animation of the trip around the lake using the nearly 700 overlapping images obtained in 2007. It’s just for fun. I hope you enjoy it.