Mercury From Chinese Coal Use Pollutes Oregon's Willamette River

Via the Oregonian , we learn that "The inky smoke belched by chimneys in Chinese cities such as Linfen and Datong contains mercury, a metal linked to fetal and child development problems. Trace amounts of the poison can take less than a week to reach Oregon, where research suggests that about one-fifth of the mercury entering the Willamette River comes from abroad -- increasingly from China." No doubt the same thing is happening along much of the west coast of Canada, which is why China's sanctioning of coal to liquid technology to produce transportation fuel is directly significant to North Americans, and why it is so important to help China become more reliant on efficient processes and products. Wondering how those salmon get mercury contamination? Herein lies a partial answer. Engagement on a post-Kyoto international agreement looks ever more important. Photo credit: Willamette River Keepers

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