EPA awards grants to reduce health risk of mercury in Great Lakes fish

By KBJR News 1

EPA awards grants to reduce health risk of mercury in Great Lakes fish

November 20, 2013 Updated Nov 20, 2013 at 3:34 PM CDT

Chicago, IL (NNCNOW.com) --- The EPA has awarded four Great Lakes Restoration Initiative grants to reduce the risk of exposure to mercury for those who eat fish from the Great Lakes.

The grants total over $3.6 million to state health departments in Michigan, Minnesota and Wisconsin along with Cornell University in New York.

“These EPA Great Lakes Restoration Initiative grants fund work that will help people make better decisions about the health benefits and risks of eating Great Lakes fish,” said Susan Hedman, EPA Region 5 Administrator/Great Lakes National Program Manager. “The projects funded by this year’s grants will build on work funded by EPA in prior years – which found that despite significant progress on these issues, ten percent babies born along the north shore of Lake Superior had mercury levels above the EPA dose limit.”

Minnesota will test the effectiveness of “user friendly” information in changing fish consumption habits. Minnesota will also increase the number of women participating in a study to determine whether screening questions help health care practitioners accurately predict their patients’ mercury exposure.

Wisconsin Department of Health Services health care clinics on the south shore of Lake Superior will use a screening tool to assess patients’ risk of exposure and test the mercury levels of patients who frequently eat Great Lakes fish.

Posted to the web by Krista Burns