CLEAR LAKE CYANOTOXIN ISSUES

EPA

The Environmental Protection Department (Big Valley EPA) researches, plans, funds, and implements projects that protect the Tribe’s environment.  Return to Big Valley EPA's page.

The Big Valley Band of Pomo Indians began a cyanobacteria and cyanotoxin monitoring program on Clear Lake in 2014 with another shoreline Tribe, Elem Indian Colony. Together the two Tribes' Environmental Departments have collaborated with equipment, resources and time to test the water for toxins produced by cyanobacteria (AKA “Blue Green Algae”). These toxins are called cyanotoxins and can be neurotoxins, liver toxins and skin toxins. The Tribes began this program because despite the fact that Clear Lake had thick, noxious blooms covering its surface every summer since 2009, there was no regular and active monitoring of these blooms for the cyanotoxins that the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) had reviewed and suggested Action Levels for in 2012, and for which the World Health Organization provided guidance regarding exposure in the 1990’s.  OEHHA's Report  

CURRENT RESULTS - 2020 SAMPLING RESULTS/LOCATIONS 

 

LAB UPDATE ON CLEAR LAKE CYANOTOXIN LEVELS:

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At our last sampling event on 3/10/20, 8 sites were lab analyzed for Microcystin producing genes, and 3 for Anatoxin-a producing genes. One site (Jago Bay - JB) had a moderate detect of MICROCYSTIN producing genes and the remaining sites were NON DETECT for toxin producing genes.  After a resample for actual toxins on March 16, results came back NON DETECT.  *WHAT ARE TOXIN PRODUCING GENES? *WHY ARE YOU SAMPLING FOR TOXIN PRODUCING GENES AND NOT TOXINS?  On the Water Resources Program section on this web page, please see document entitled "Screening for Toxins Using qPCR on Clear Lake" 
 

The most recent testing MICROCYSTIN  producing genes results:

SITE               RESULT

JB              ND

LC01          ND

UBL            ND

BVCL6        ND

KEYS03      ND

CL-3           ND

SHADY-01   ND

The most recent testing ANATOXIN-A results:

SITE               RESULT

UBL                 ND

KEYS03         ND

BP                ND

JB                 ND

SITE               RESULT

KEYS02        NS (NOT SAMPLED)

BP               NS

LS2              NS

HB               NS

APO1           NS

RED01         NS

KP01           NS

RODS          NS

LPTNT         NS

CP               NS

SC01            NS

CLV7           NS

LUC01         NS

KEYS01        NS

ELEM01        NS

SBMMEL01   NS

CL-1            NS 

CL-5            NS

CL-4            NS

GH              NS

Winter sampling on Clear Lake is monthly with fewer sites.  Our next sampling date is in early April, 2020.

EPA STAFF:

Sarah Ryan, Environmental Director (707)263-3924 x132 and (707)349-4040 cell

John Gichuki, Assistant Envt'l Director (707)263-3924 x133

Elias Rodriguez, Recycling Center Manager

Pedro Miguel, Environmental Technician

Katherine Schrade, Environmental Technician

Michael Nevarez, Solid Waste Technician

Mark McCloud, Jr, Solid Waste Technician