The Greenpeace Mercury study was created in reaction to a Bush Administration proposal to weaken a Clinton-era decision that would have reduced mercury emissions from power plants, a leading cause of mercury pollution in the United States, by 90 percent by 2008. "Mercury emissions from coal power plants are dangerous and toxic to our environment and the fish we eat", stated Casey Harrell, Greenpeace Clean Energy Now! Campaigner. "Masontown residents, like all people, have a right to know what is in their bodies and they also have the right to know why their President is not protecting their health from this poison."
"Mercury exposure in children can affect critical neurological development including memory, language, motor skills and other brain functions. This damage can permanently affect their quality of life, academic success and economic prospects in life," Harrell continued. "When the Centers for Disease Control estimates that as many as 630,000 infants (1 in 6) are born in the U.S. every year with a risk of having unsafe amounts of mercury in their bodies, we know that mercury poisoning is at a near epidemic level. Today, residents living in Masontown can learn about this problem, get tested, and through this knowledge, learn how to keep their levels of mercury low.