Mercury Pollution of Water as a Global Health Threat Term Paper by scribbler

Mercury Pollution of Water as a Global Health Threat
An overview of the environmental pollution by mercury and its negative health effects.
# 152388 | 3,014 words | 9 sources | APA | 2013 | US

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This paper argues that mercury pollution of water represents a global health threat. The paper explains how organic mercury is easily accumulated in aquatic organisms such as plankton and fish, how it is easily passed on to humans along the food chain, and how its accumulation leads to slow destruction of the brain neurons and both physical as well as cognitive impairments. Furthermore, the paper reveals that government intervention has so far been lackadaisical and the dangers of mercury poisoning continue to be downplayed. The paper maintains that a new, more vigorous and environmentally proactive approach is called for to control and to stop the silent pollution of our lakes, rivers and oceans with this dangerous, deadly and slow poison.

Mercury Contamination Aquatic Environments
Mercury Contamination Health Effects
Fish Consumption and Mercury Levels (Pregnant women)
Methyl Mercury Toxicity and Neuronal Development
Mercury Contamination (A Canadian Case)
Mercury Contamination (An underplayed Issue)

From the Paper:

"Mercury is now a well-known contaminant of aquatic environments. The main health concern stems from the fact that mercury easily bioaccumulates in fish which is an important source of food for humans. Over the past several years' studies have shown that mercury levels in fishes have reached toxic levels. This has directly been related to the industrial pollution of our waterways. Mercury contamination of fresh water lakes is in fact so widespread that a recent US Survey reported that as many as 33 states have submitted advisory reports for fish consumption from these water bodies due to real concerns about increased mercury levels. [D.P. Krabbenhoft] Mercury, when it is dumped in the rivers and lakes, gets converted by bacterial action into a more powerful toxic form known as methylmercury. This methylmercury can easily accumulate in the cells of aquatic organisms such as plankton, algae, fish, etc and by way of the food chain slowly accumulate in humans. In what is referred to as the process of bio magnification, mercury slowly affects the entire ecosystem. Thus consumption of mercury-contaminated food poses a serious threat to the health of people. While high doses of mercury can be immediately disastrous, slow mercury poisoning through fish food is the more important problem. [Environment Canada]"

Sample of Sources Used:

  • Environment Canada, 'Environment and Health', retrieved May 11th 2010, from,
  • D.P. Krabbenhoft and D.A. Rickert, 'Mercury Contamination of Aquatic Ecosystems', retrieved May 11th 2010, from,
  • NRDC, 'Mercury Contamination in Fish', retrieved May 11th 2010, from,
  • Euy Hyuk Kim, In Kyu Kim, Ja Young Kwon, Sang Wun Kim, and Yong Won Park, (Oct 2006), 'The Effect of Fish Consumption on Blood Mercury Levels of Pregnant Women', Yonsei Med J. 47(5): 626-633. , Available online at,
  • Sato RL, LI GG & Shaha S, (Jun 2006), 'Antepartum seafood Consumption and mercury levels in newborn cord blood', Am J Obstet Gynecol. 194(6):1683-8

Cite this Term Paper:

APA Format

Mercury Pollution of Water as a Global Health Threat (2013, February 05) Retrieved February 05, 2023, from

MLA Format

"Mercury Pollution of Water as a Global Health Threat" 05 February 2013. Web. 05 February. 2023. <>