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This Mercury Tastes Delicious!

By Amy Hart in News on Sep 20, 2005 5:28PM


Yesterday US Congressman Mark Kirk held a hearing at the Shedd Aquarium to discuss the results of a study done by the National Oceanic and Atmosphere Administration, which determined Lake Michigan has more mercury pollution than all of the other Great Lakes.

Toxic levels of mercury in the lake can accumulate in fish and, when ingested, lead to a myriad of health concerns, such as damage to the nervous system and heart disease. The Environmental Protection Agency and the Centers for Disease Control recommend that consumers, especially pregnant women, limit their consumption of certain kinds of fish.

The chief evil doers in Lake Michigan’s high mercury levels appear to be the coal-fired electric power plants along the shoreline in Illinois, Wisconsin, Michigan and Indiana, although some of the pollution comes all the way from Nevada and Texas.

The Bush administration’s environmental policy (no, that is not an oxymoron) states that current mercury regulations are effective, but Kirk and Congressman Rahm Emanuel, with the support of Mayor Daley, vow to fight for tougher environmental regulations to make our beloved lake safe.