A Republican congressman is calling for stricter control of mercury emissions. The Great Lakes Radio Consortium’s Lester Graham reports:
A Republican congressman is calling for stricter control of mercury
emissions. The Great Lakes Radio Consortium’s Lester Graham
In Representative Mark Kirk’s congressional district on the
north side of Chicago, samples of rain water have shown mercury
levels as much as 32 times higher than the mercury levels that the
Environmental Protection Agency considers safe
Mercury is a naturally occurring element, but much of the
mercury in precipitation comes from coal-burning power plants.
Mike Murray is with the environmental group National Wildlife
which supports Congressman Kirk’s legislation. Murray says forms of
mercury are taken up into the food chain, where its toxic effects multiply.
“Fish concentrations can be millions of times higher than the
in the surrounding water, and that’s where it becomes a problem.”
Mercury contamination can cause neurological damage in fetuses and
children, leading to decreased intellect and problems with language
skills, among other things. High levels of mercury have been found in a
number of areas throughout the Great Lakes states.
For the Great Lakes Radio Consortium, this is Lester Graham.