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Water: News

Newsletter—February 2007

Note: The following summaries are based on articles from the press and from peer-reviewed publications, and they represent the opinions of the original authors. The views of authors expressed herein do not necessarily state or reflect those of the United States Government, and shall not be used for advertising or product endorsement purposes. Reference herein to any specific commercial products, process, or service by trade name, trademark, manufacturer, or otherwise, does not necessarily constitute or imply its endorsement, recommendation, or favoring by the United States Government.

Recent Advisory News

  • Kansas issues new fish consumption advisories. KANSAS - The 2007 fish consumption advisories issued by Kansas state officials included guidelines for mercury, polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), perchlorate, lead, and cadmium. Monitoring data indicated a decrease in mercury and PCB levels in Kansas and three counties (Crawford, Lyon, and Wyandotte) no longer have fish consumption advisories.
    • Source: HULIQ - January 24, 2007
  • The Pigeon flies again, long-time fish advisory on fish consumption lifted. NORTH CAROLINA - The last fish consumption advisory in the Pigeon River segment downstream of the Blue Ridge Paper mill in Canton, NC was lifted in January. This is largely due to the 20-year clean up effort and investments by the mill. Current focus of the restoration effort is to reintroduce native species that were eliminated from the river due to previous contamination.
    • Source: Waynesville Smoky Mountain News - January 24, 2007
  • Sampling finds more mercury-tainted fish in Colorado. Denver, CO - Colorado state health officials say they will issue fish consumption advisories for five new water bodies due to elevated mercury levels. These advisories will recommend limited consumption for the general population and no consumption for pregnant and nursing women and young children.
    • Source: 9News.com - January 24, 2007
  • John McCoy, agencies warn W. Va anglers of tainted fish. WEST VIRGINIA - State officials recently issued the annual fish consumption advisory which included both general advisory and watershed-specific advisories.
    • Source: Charleston Gazette - January 13, 2007

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Current Events, News and Journal Articles

  • Mercury contamination in forest and freshwater ecosystems in the northeastern United States. This article summarizes sources, fate and transport, and concentration of mercury in various species in northeastern United States. The authors also compared their mercury deposition reduction estimates that would be associated with the Clean Air Mercury Rule (CAMR) with estimates provided by the USEPA. In addition, the article discussed the potential impacts of these reductions to freshwater ecosystems. Compiled fish tissue data from various sources indicated that of the 13 fish species evaluated, mean fillet mercury levels in 10 species were above the USEPA criterion of 0.3 µg/g. In addition, the current average fish mercury concentrations in the northeastern region exceeded this criterion by 10% to 88%. Assuming full implementation of the CAMR, mercury deposition reduction estimates for 2025 from this study (18% to 30%) was lower than the USEPA estimate (70%). The authors indicated that the CAMR alone may not be sufficient for the protection of human and environmental health. The authors also suggested that significant additional emission reductions from other US and global sources would be needed in order to meet the USEPA human health criterion.
    • Source: Driscoll, C.T., Han, Y.J., Chen, C.Y., Evers, D.C., Lambert, K.F., Holsen, T.M., Kamman, N.C., Munson, R.K. (2007). Bioscience, Volume 57(1): 17-28.
  • Contaminants in tilapia (Oreochromis mossambicus) from the Salton Sea, California, in relation to human health, piscivorous birds and fish meal production. A risk assessment was conducted for human health and fish-eating birds consuming tilapia from the Salton Sea. A review of existing data indicated that of the 17 trace elements, 42 organic pesticides and 48 polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), only selenium (Se), arsenic (As) and possibly dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDE) were at elevated concentrations that could potentially contribute to risks for human health, fish, or bird. Assuming a 70 year exposure time, risk analyses indicated that a 1 in 100,000 probability of cancer risk may be associated with weekly consumption of 19 oz or more of As-contaminated fish. Comparison with USEPA guidelines for As indicated no risk is likely to be associated with non-carcinogenic effects. For Se, no unacceptable risk was found to be associated with adult and child fish consumption of up to 35 oz and 15 oz of fillet per week, respectively. The current fish advisory issued by the State of California recommends consumption of no more than 4 oz per every 2 weeks of any fish collected from the Salton Sea. The authors suggested revision of this advisory based on new information. Based on limited data for DDE (n=4), a 1 in 100,000 probability of cancer risk was also estimated for the consumption of more than 4 meals per week of DDE-contaminated fish.
    • Source: Moreau, M.F., Surico, B.J., Vicario, F.M., Crane, D., Gerads, R., Gersberg, R.M., Hurlbert, S.H. (2007). Hydrobiologia, Volume 576: 127-165.
  • Analysis of veterinary drug residues in fish and shrimp composites collected during the Canadian Total Diet Study, 1993-2004. Concentrations of 39 veterinary drug residues in shrimp, marine fish, freshwater fish, and canned fish were analyzed to evaluate potential exposure to Canadians. This article summarizes the results from the analysis and concluded that Canadians are exposed to some banned and unapproved veterinary drug residues via fish and shrimp consumption.
    • Source: Tittlemier, S.A., Van de Riet, J., Burns, G., Potter, R., Murphy, C., Rourke, W., Pearce, H., Dufresne, G. (2007). Food Additives and Contaminants, Volume 24(1): 14-20.
  • Maternal fish consumption, mercury levels, and risk of preterm delivery. Total mercury levels in hair from 1,024 pregnant women (ranging from 15th to 27th week of pregnancy) from five Michigan communities were evaluated. In addition, information relating to the amount and category of fish consumed during the current pregnancy was also obtained. This study showed that canned fish appeared to be the greatest source of mercury exposure via fish consumption. In addition, results indicated that after adjustment for maternal characteristics and fish consumption, women with hair mercury levels at or above the 90th percentile were more likely to deliver before 35 weeks' gestation.
    • Source: Xue, F., Holzman, C., Rahbar, M.H., Trosko, K., Fischer, L. (2007). Environmental Health Perspectives, Volume 115(1): 42-47.

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Meetings and Conferences

  • Michigan Environmental Health Association's (MEHA) 63rd Annual Educational Conference. March 27-30, 2007, Kalamazoo, MI. For more information, visit MEHA http://www.meha.net/banner.htm.
  • American Water Resources Association (AWRA) 2007 Summer Specialty Conference, Emerging Contaminants of Concern in the Environment: Issues, Investigations. June 25-27, 2007, Vail, CO. For more information, visit AWRA http://awra.org/meetings/Vail2007/index.html. Exit EPA Disclaimer
  • National Environmental Health Association (NEHA) 71th Annual Educational Conference & Exhibition. June 25-28, 2007, Atlantic City, NJ. For more information, visit NEHA http://www.neha.org. Exit EPA Disclaimer
  • American Fisheries Society (AFS) 136th Annual Meeting. September 2-6, 2007, San Francisco, CA. For more information, visit AFS http://www.fisheries.org/sf/. Exit EPA Disclaimer
  • 121st AOAC Annual Meeting and Exposition. September 16-20, 2007, Anaheim, CA. For more information, visit AOAC http://www.aoac.org/meetings1/main.htm. Exit EPA Disclaimer
  • American Public Health Association (APHA) 135th Annual Meeting and Exposition. November 3-7, 2007, Washington, DC. For more information, visit APHA http://www.apha.org/meetings/. Exit EPA Disclaimer
  • Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry (SETAC) North America 28th Annual Meeting. November 11-15, 2007, Milwaukee, WI. For more information, visit SETAC http://milwaukee.setac.org/home.asp.
  • Society for Risk Analysis (SRA) 2007 Annual Meeting. December 9-12, 2007, San Antonio, TX. For more information, visit SRA http://www.sra.org/events_2007_meeting.php. Exit EPA Disclaimer

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For More Information

Please email the newsletter (bigler.jeff@epa.gov) if you would like to announce an upcoming meeting, conference, or to submit an article.


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