Mercury in Fish Overblown

Mercury in Fish Overblown

Murray/Conko Letter in The Ledger (Lakeland, FL)
April 07, 2005

Tom Palmer suggests that the Competitive <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags" />Enterprise Institute has "muddied the water" in the debate over mercury emissions ["Several Lakes Have Do-Not-Eat-Fish Advisories Because of Mercury Levels," column, March 30]. That is only true if giving people more information about the real extent of this complex problem counts as muddying the waters.The effect of mercury emissions on human health via fish consumption has been significantly overblown by environmental activists, who are keen to restrict mercury emissions for other reasons. But U.S. power plants emit only a small fraction of annual mercury emissions. That is why a recent joint study from the Brookings Institution and American Enterprise Institute found that the cost of the proposals vastly outweighed their marginal health benefits.While activists would like to scare consumers about mercury contamination of fish, it is noteworthy that even the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists encourages pregnant women to consume more, not less, fish.<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />