Title

The Fish Mercury Monitoring Program in the Gulf of Mexico: Assessing its Effectiveness at Targeting High Risk Groups

Date of Award

8-4-2008

Document Type

Capstone Project

Disciplines

Environmental Policy & Mgmt

Degree Name

Master of Applied Science

Department

Environmental Policy & Mgmt

Advisor

Kenneth Knox

Keywords

Advisory; Fish consumption; Gulf of Mexico; Mercury

Abstract

Mercury is a heavy metal that can be highly concentrated in fish and cause the potential for severe negative human health consequences. The Gulf of Mexico has multiple sources of mercury contamination which pollute the fish. The effectiveness of the mercury monitoring and fish consumption advisory programs is, therefore, critical to the public making sound health choices. The Gulf's States advisory programs lack the regulation that would ensure the consistency and rigor needed to protect their coastal communities. The advisories generally do not agree on content, depth of information, or the relevance of current data. This Capstone provided recommendations for five advisory criteria that will strengthen the weaknesses of the programs and help to establish a more standardized system.

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