Mercury: It's What's For Dinner
Have you been following our Name That Fish contest? As part of our Cleaning Up Mercury, Protecting Our Health campaign, we just rechristened the Bluefin Tuna as “Blue Infection Tuna.” The timing couldn't be more perfect... a new Federal study was just released this month on the alarming mercury levels in tuna and other fish in the Pacific ocean.
A landmark study by scientists from the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and universities in the U.S. and Australia has, for the first time, documented how escalating mercury-laden air emissions, chiefly from coal-fired electrical power plants in Asia, are being transformed into methylmercury, a potent neurotoxin that is increasingly polluting the North Pacific Ocean and contaminating tuna, swordfish and other popular seafood.
Scientific American also picked up the story:
A federal study released today explains for the first time the link between global mercury emissions and the contamination of tuna and other marine life in the North Pacific Ocean.
Concerns over mercury pollution and exposure continue to make news around the world. Our campaign is designed to educate and mobilize the public to tell the Environmental Protection Agency that they support their plans to cut mercury and other air pollution now. If you have not done so already, please contact the EPA now.
We also need everyone to help us spread the word. Do you have a blog? Write about our campaign and we’ll try to highlight your post here on the UnEarthed blog. This week, a special thanks to Blue Living Ideas for giving us a shout.
Blue Living Ideas says:
Many manufacturing plants release other toxic components such as mercury into nearby waterways that are often the main water supply for the area. Coal plants are especially to blame. While people increasingly avoid seafood in their diet to lower their incidence of mercury poisoning, it is important to remember that the problem does not begin with the fish itself, but rather with industrialization in the surrounding waters.
Earthjustice has been working to clean up the cement industry’s toxic mercury emissions for over a decade. Given that the EPA has just announced a proposal to reduce mercury emissions from Portland cement kilns, it appears that Earthjustice’s good work has not been in vain.