Discovery Guides Areas


Methylmercury Contamination in Fish and Shellfish
(Released February 2007)

  by Laura Griesbauer  


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Methylmercury accumulation in seafood and fish products is a growing global concern that poses severe health risks to the public. While mercury occurs naturally, large amounts enter the environment from anthropogenic sources. In the U.S., legislation has been passed to reduce mercury pollution from human sources, for instance through capping mercury emissions from coal-burning power plants and banning certain products that contain mercury. Furthermore, concerns over the amount of mercury present in fish have also lead to guidelines for fish consumption and allowable mercury levels. Since fish has many other health benefits and is an excellent source of protein, it is important to understand the risks of mercury in the environment and in the seafood we eat. By understanding where mercury comes from, how it enters the environment, how it accumulates in seafood and the health effects of mercury, we can make educated decisions about the food we consume.

fish at a grocers
Panel urges more fish-mercury safety advice

Go To Mercury and Its Sources

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