Friday, March 25, 2005

All you fish-eaters out there...

get your mecury levels checked, especially if you're thinking about becoming pregnant any time soon. There is a fish consumption advisory for Ohio.

In 2004, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) jointly issued a national mercury-related advisory for store-bought fish and fish served in restaurants. This advice is for women who might become pregnant, women who are pregnant, nursing mothers, and young children. This advice states:

1. Do not eat Shark, Swordfish, King Mackerel, or Tilefish because they contain high levels of mercury.
2. Eat up to 12 ounces (two average meals) a week of a variety of fish and shellfish that are lower in mercury.
    * Five of the most commonly eaten fish that are low in mercury are shrimp, canned light tuna, salmon, pollock, and catfish.
    * Another commonly eaten fish, albacore ("white") tuna has more mercury than canned light tuna. So, when choosing your two meals of fish and shellfish, you may eat up to six ounces (one average meal) of albacore tuna per week.
3. Check local advisories about the safety of fish caught by family and friends in your local lakes, rivers and coastal areas. If no advice is available, eat up to six ounces (one average meal) per week of fish you catch from local waters, but don't consume any other fish during that week.

Now you maybe thinking, why isn't the Environmental Protection Agency doing anything about it? Well, the Bush EPA doesn't believe in actually protecting the envrionment or public health. The Bush EPA scrapped Clinton EPA rule to implement a 90% mercury emissions reduction by 2008 and replaced it with a plan of a 70 percent reduction by 2018, claiming that the costs would be too expensive and that there aren't enough health benefits to warrant such as short timeline for compliance.

Now we find out that the Bush EPA ignores and suppresses studies it originally sponsored when it conflicts with it's be cheap and screw public health and the environment marching orders.

The Onion has it correct:

EPA To Drop 'E,' 'P' From Name
WASHINGTON, DC—Days after unveiling new power-plant pollution regulations that rely on an industry-favored market-trading approach to cutting mercury emissions, EPA Acting Administrator Stephen Johnson announced that the agency will remove the "E" and "P" from its name. "We're not really 'environmental' anymore, and we certainly aren't 'protecting' anything," Johnson said. "'The Agency' is a name that reflects our current agenda and encapsulates our new function as a government-funded body devoted to handling documents, scheduling meetings, and fielding phone calls." The change comes on the heels of the Department of Health and Human Services' January decision to shorten its name to the Department of Services.

-The Ticked Off Ohioan


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