Friday, September 24, 2010

How About A Little Mercury With Your Shrimp?

After a bad week where I had the nosy redneck version of Papa Smurf hassle me over an issue at work that I had already resolved with my boss my easygoing and good natured disposition was severely stressed. The sorry shithead so ruffled my feathers that it has derailed what little talent I have in writing my normal drivel resulting in a desperate attempt to get my normal six posts out a month. Well, at least I still have my devilish good looks and cultured wit to carry me through.

Okay now dammit, you can all stop laughing on that last one.

Of a far more important concern is the nature of the lingering effects of the huge cluster fuck out in the Gulf of Mexico which may result in all sorts of nasty diseases that will effect everyone who lives in that area and eats the seafood. But we are apparently all small potatoes in the greater scheme of multi-national corporations, hail the glories of capitalism. Hell, that fucker Hayward even got his life back, good for him but I bet he will never eat the seafood.

Heavy metals go untested in Gulf seafood

Experts urge caution for pregnant women and young children

Despite claims from President Barack Obama and federal officials that Gulf seafood is safe and poses no long-term health risks, no testing for heavy metals is occurring in fish or shellfish in areas that have been reopened to commercial and recreational fishing.

Both National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and FDA officials told Raw Story that fish and shellfish being tested for the purpose of reopening waters to commercial and recreational fishing are not being tested for heavy metals.

Whenever Raw Story raised the lack of heavy metal testing, FDA and NOAA officials routinely referenced a “Mussel Watch” program. Yet neither agency seemed to have a clear grasp on how this program actually collected useful data related to the heavy metal levels in the seafood currently being fished and sold to market.

aw Story examined the “Mussel Watch” page on NOAA’s website and found no clear additional protocol in place for protecting the public from these contaminants in their seafood due to the BP oil spill.

This is particularly troubling to scientists and public health experts.

Gina Solomon, a doctor and public health expert in the department of medicine at the University of California at San Francisco, told Raw Story, “What we would expect is the heavy metal levels in Gulf seafood will be starting to creep up as a result of the spill.”

Solomon, a co-author on last month’s peer-reviewed Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) study on Gulf seafood safety and also a senior scientist at the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), cautioned, “And so right now, we might not be seeing elevated levels, but right now is the time to collect baseline information and to develop a sampling plan for monitoring into the future to make sure that levels don’t continue to rise and cause trouble months or years from now.”

She said it’s important to remember that fish and shellfish in the Gulf of Mexico already contained certain levels of heavy metals prior to the BP oil spill, which, at its height, gushed oil at an estimated rate equivalent to the 1989 Exxon Valdez disaster – previously the largest in US history – every four days.


Pixel Peeper said...

Jeez, Beach, if I go vegetarian now, it'll all be your fault.

Scary. And yet, many call for LESS government? Business will police itself? When will we learn? I want a strong government looking out for the common good. I'm just too damn busy to test for levels of heavy metals in fish, or salmonella in eggs, or whatever was in the peanut butter a few years back.

sunshine said...

Yikes! It sounds like the people are going to have to stop eating the seafood. I know that I wouldn't touch it now.


Liberality said...

Hey, what's a little mercury in your seafood? So, you get a little dumber. Most people are already dumb to trust big business to look out for your best interests so what's a few more IQ points?


ps. I'm glad I'm a vegetarian for reasons like this!

Will "take no prisoners" Hart said...

Finally, my vegetarianism reaps some benefits......Actually, double b (and, yeah, here comes my innermost PETA again), the shrimping industry itself is wreaking major havoc on the environment. The process of trolling the ocean floor is devastating the ecological balance for hundred of species. Add to that all of the "bycatch" that just gets thrown back (dead) into the water (and, yes, thereby threatening scores of other species) and, no, it probably isn't the best food to be eating to begin with.

TomCat said...

A TomCat without fish?!!? What a revolting proposition!

Randal Graves said...

But did you score with Smurfette?

Tim said...

Beach, you have to look at the big picture. The Mercury was all planned.
This way people can always know their own temperature. Koch is trying to get a patten on it. We should be saying thank you BP. We really didn't want to live to long anyway.;)

Beach Bum said...

Pixel and Sunshine: Its a serious bummer for me since I often search out seafood restaurants that serve seafood caught in US waters.

Liberality: Seriously! I don't trust any big business or government official. They are usually lacking both their souls and spines.

Will: Yeah, the big trawlers but if we here in South Carolina do one thing right is provide escapes for dolphins and sea turtles. As for the rest the operations down here are too small to endanger species.

Tomcat: Its freaking me out too! I need my shrimp, oysters, crabs, and red snapper.

Randal: Actually, his wife is short and wears a dress like that blue hussy.

Tim: LOL!!! There you go making my head hurt again.

Doc Häagen-Dazs said...

Don't worry. Be happy. Go fishing. And eat beef.

Gwendolyn H. Barry said...

Great post.
When you have a moment, take a google at the Gulf Stream... our friend on this side of the drink.
It's gone asunder here and there and it seems our weather patterns are being tickled here and vastly shifted there and what the fuck do the corporate bastards in the White House or boardrooms care about that..
Sorry for the bitch at work, man. I'm having a week of sick. But it's all in the game... (what is that song?) Ta Beach!

Beach Bum said...

Doc Haagen: Didn't you hear? Beef is bad for you. LOL!!!

Gwen: Serious? I hadn't heard anything about the Gulf Stream going haywire. Now for the last couple of years I've heard murmurs of glacial melt water throwing enough fresh water into the conveyor to send it south and sending North America and western Europe into a deep freeze.

lime said...

why am i not in he least bit surprised by any of this?

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Marja said...

Yeh we are always a bit apprehensive when eating seafood here. Mercury seems to be everywhere. We are poisening our food more and more This is an endless chapter and a lot of what we eat is bad. Good on you to ring a bell.

Beach Bum said...

Lime: Saw a report that people living next oil and chemical refineries have been catching strange illnesses for decades, but the are usually in poorer African-American neighborhoods and most everyone understands how things here in the South works, even these days.

Now I'm hearing about coastal residents, especially fishing families, talking about the similar issues.

David: You smell like spam but let me look at your site and I'll think about it.

Marja: Yeah, I even hear the whales the Japanese hunt-I mean do research on-have such high quanities of mercury that it could hurt children that eat the meat for prolonged periods.