Water Is Life Blog

Mercury: Don’t Eat It and Don’t Drink It

Aug 28, 2012

warningApparently broken thermometers are not the only way that we can get exposed to mercury.  Our reservoirs, rivers and waterways are affected by mercury that comes down with the rain!  We know it can be harmful to eat too much local fish.  My thinking is:  if the fish are full of mercury, how about the water they swim in, the water we drink?    In Lexington where I live the Board of Selectmen sent a letter to EPA administrator Lisa Jackson highlighting the problem.

“Mercury pollution, much of it coming from coal-fired power plants, represents a particularly widespread threat to families nationwide.  A dangerous neurotoxin, mercury poses a particular threat to pregnant women and small children.  Exposure affects a developming child’s ability to walk, talk, read and learn. The Center for Disease Control estimates that as many as 1 in 6 women of childbearing age have high enough mercury levels in their blood to harm a developing fetus.

As of 2010, all 50 states have fish consumption advisories in place to warn residents of the potential health effects of eating fish caught from local waters.  Of these advisories, 81% were issued in part because of mercury pollution accumulated within the aquatic food chain.

PictureReducing mercury pollution from coal power plants will result in as many as 11,000 lives saved, 4700 heart attacks and 130,000 asthma attacks per year.”

Fortunately, it is easy to protect your family.  MULTIPURE‘s solid carbon block filters and RO systems are all NSF-certified to reduce mercury in your drinking water.

The Selectmen’s letter was excerpted by Mark Sandeen, Chairman of Sustainable Lexington.  He quoted it in his environmental column in the Colonial Times and gave me permission to use it in my blog.  Thanks, Mark and keep up the good work!