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40% Less Mercury in Fish Shows Success of US Coal Industry Caps

Wednesday July 22, 2015    9:41 AM

A large drop in bluefish mercury levels suggest a healthier seafood supply – and that U.S. coal regulations are working.

Mercury levels in bluefish caught off the U.S. Atlantic coast have officially dropped 43% since 1972, according to a new study in Environmental Science & Technology.

Scientists say the drop is due to federal restrictions on coal emissions that have resulted in less mercury being transported by rainfall into the ocean.

Emissions from the top 100 U.S. electric power producers have decreased by 50 percent during 2000-2012, according to a Natural Resources Defense Council report

The lower mercury levels are promising for bluefish and other predatory fish like tuna and swordfish, which have been considered a major source of mercury exposure in the U.S. and linked to health complications in pregnant women and their children.

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