Air Pollution/ Mercury Contamination

WHEREAS, twenty waterbodies in Louisiana have mercury advisories from the state Departments of Environmental Quality and Health & Hospitals which discourage the consumption of certain species of fish, including popular recreational and food species, and

WHEREAS, mercury is a neurotoxin linked to developmental delays and cognitive deficits at low exposure levels, and

WHEREAS, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently found that 10% of women of childbearing age already have blood mercury levels above that considered safe for pregnant women as determined by the National Academy of Sciences, and

WHEREAS, advisory-level mercury concentrations are known to occur in some commercial seafood including shark, swordfish, king mackerel and tuna, and

WHEREAS, coal-fired power plants make up the single largest source of mercury contamination (33% of all mercury emitted to the atmosphere), and

WHEREAS, mercury pollution in the atmosphere settles out into waterbodies were it is persistent and concentrates (bioaccumulates) through the food chain.

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Louisiana Wildlife Federation urges that air quality standards be set for mercury emissions from coal-fired power plants and other sources, and that such standards be strictly enforced to protect air quality and to prevent the contamination offish and other natural resources.

Adopted by the Louisiana Wildlife Federation in convention assembled, 3 March 2002, in Marksville, Louisiana.

Resolution #:19C, 2002
Date Proposed:03/03/2002
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