Thursday, September 16, 2004

Mercury Rising Thanks to Bush : A Sleeper Issue?

This morning CSPAN2's Washington Journal carried a 30 minute interview with Robert F. Kennedy Jr.

The subject was his new book Crimes Against Nature: How George Bush and His Corporate Pals Are Plundering the Country and Hijacking Our Democracy (Harper-Collins).

The Bush administration, in its Orwellian named "Clean Air Act", seeks to gut any serious improvement in the mercury emissions of old power plants.

According to Kennedy, one-sixth of all American women at present have levels of mercury in their womb which are high enough to cause autism, mental retardation, cognitive impairment, liver disease, etc in their newborn children.

630,000 children are born per year in U.S. with damage due to levels of mercury contamination in the air (which is then absorbed by water and fish and...).

The cost of removing this mercury contamination would amount to 1% of a typical power plant's revenue. Yet the Bush team is gutting provisions for any cleanup. The 110 million dollars contributed to the Bush campaign returns several billion dollars in regulatory relief for polluting industries, a cost that is borne by the American taxpayer in dirtier water, air, fish, and increased medical problems in newborn children.

Former lobbyists of the worst polluters are now in charge of major environmental regulatory agencies and making the decisions about scaling back 30 years of environmental progress.

Why aren't the women of America up in arms about such a vital and personal issue??

Where is the media attention to this issue. Has the major media outlets, controlled by about six major corporate groups, lost their credibility?? I think the answer has to be yes.

More information is on the National Resources Defense Council web sites.


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