EPA Administrator Regan just announced important new mercury and air toxics (MATS) protections.
Moms Clean Air Force heartily applauds this announcement. The science is clearer with every passing year: Any amount of mercury endangers developing fetal brains and the brains of children. No amount is safe.
Moms Clean Air Force has been fighting for the strongest possible protections against mercury from the earliest days of our organization 12 years ago.
And we can’t say it often enough: your voices matter. Your participation in the processes of passing health protections really matters. When it comes to mercury, many of you have signed petitions, made calls, attended events, and even testified before EPA. Thank you to our 1.5 million members for all you have done—and will do—to get us to much cleaner air.
People consume mercury from eating contaminated fish and rice. Mercury spews from coal power plants, and that mercury settles into bodies of water, where it converts to a particularly toxic form called methylmercury. As it is eaten by fish, methylmercury travels up the food chain—and it becomes more concentrated in large fattier fish, such as tuna. Mercury lodges in fatty tissue.
When a pregnant person consumes mercury-contaminated fish or rice, that mercury crosses the placental barrier and finds the only fatty tissue in a fetus: the brain. There it disrupts the development of healthy brain structures, leading to behavioral and learning problems.
Mercury protections work, but our work is far from done.
You will be hearing more from the team at Moms leading our EPA work as we sign petitions for the record and call on members to testify at hearings for stronger protections.
Please read our resources to learn more:
- Fact Sheet: Mercury 101 (2022)
- Map of worst-polluting coal plants (EDF, 2022)
- Overview: The Health Benefits of Mercury Standards Are Much Larger Than Estimated (2019)
- Illustrative Fact Sheet: How Mercury Poisoning Works (2018); click here to view in Spanish (Cómo Actúa el Envenenamiento por Mercurio)
TELL EPA: MOMS SUPPORT STRENGTHENING THE MERCURY AND AIR TOXICS STANDARDS