Quantcast

Study Finds FDA Allowed Contaminants in Seafood after BP Oil Spill

Natural Resources Defense Council

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) seriously underestimated the cancer risk from contaminants that can accumulate in seafood when the agency allowed commercial fishing to resume in the Gulf of Mexico after the BP oil spill disaster, a new study published Oct. 12 found.

The study was published online by the journal Environmental Health Perspectives, authored by Miriam Rotkin-Ellman and Gina Solomon of the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC).

They found that by using flawed assumptions and outdated risk assessment methods, FDA allowed up to 10,000 times too much contamination and failed to identify risks for pregnant women and children.

Based on these findings, NRDC filed a petition Oct. 12 asking FDA to protect the public, especially pregnant women, children and people who eat a lot of seafood, by setting a standard that limits the level of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in seafood. PAHs are chemicals found in oil, industrial pollution and urban run-off that can cause cancer, birth defects, neurological delays and liver damage.

“Our findings add to a long list of evidence that FDA is overlooking the risks from chemical contaminants in food,” Rotkin-Ellman said. “We must not wait for people to get sick or cancer rates to rise, we need FDA to act now to protect the food supply.”

The study concluded that “FDA risk assessment methods should be updated to better reflect current risk assessment practices and to protect vulnerable populations such as pregnant women and children.”

For more information, click here.

—————

Link to the study “Seafood Contamination After the BP Gulf Oil Spill and Risks to Vulnerable Populations: A Critique of the FDA Risk Assessment” by clicking here.

The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) is an international nonprofit environmental organization with more than 1.3 million members and online activists. Since 1970, our lawyers, scientists and other environmental specialists have worked to protect the world's natural resources, public health, and the environment. NRDC has offices in New York City, Washington, D.C., Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago, Livingston, Montana, and Beijing. Visit us at www.nrdc.org

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

Bumblebees flying and pollinating a creeping thyme flower. emeliemaria / iStock / Getty Images

It pays to pollinate in Minnesota.

Read More Show Less
Aerial view of icebergs on Arctic Ocean in Greenland. Explora_2005 / iStock / Getty Images

The annual Arctic thaw has kicked off with record-setting ice melt and sea ice loss that is several weeks ahead of schedule, scientists said, as the New York Times reported.

Read More Show Less
Sponsored
Sled dog teams pull researchers from the Danish Meteorological Institute through meltwater on the Greenland ice sheet in early June, 2019. Danish Meteorological Institute / Steffen M. Olsen

By Jon Queally

In yet the latest shocking image depicting just how fast the world's natural systems are changing due to the global climate emergency, a photograph showing a vast expanse of melted Arctic ice in Greenland — one in which a pair of sled dog teams appear to be walking on water — has gone viral.

Read More Show Less
CAFOs often store animal waste in massive, open-air lagoons, like this one at Vanguard Farms in Chocowinity, North Carolina. Bacteria feeding on the animal waste turns the mixture a bright pink. picstever / Flickr / CC BY-ND 2.0

By Tia Schwab

It has been almost a year since Hurricane Florence slammed the Carolinas, dumping a record 30 inches of rainfall in some parts of the states. At least 52 people died, and property and economic losses reached $24 billion, with nearly $17 billion in North Carolina alone. Flood waters also killed an estimated 3.5 million chickens and 5,500 hogs.

Read More Show Less
Members of the NY Renews coalition gathered before New York lawmakers reached a deal on the Climate and Communities Protection Act. NYRenews / Twitter

By Julia Conley

Grassroots climate campaigners in New York applauded on Monday after state lawmakers reached a deal on sweeping climate legislation, paving the way for the passage of what could be some of the country's most ambitious environmental reforms.

Read More Show Less
Sponsored
In this picture taken on June 4, an Indian boatman walks amid boats on the dried bed of a lake at Nalsarovar Bird Sanctuary, on the eve of World Environment Day. Sam Panthaky / AFP / Getty Images

By Julia Conley

Nearly 50 people died on Saturday in one Indian state as record-breaking heatwaves across the country have caused an increasingly desperate situation.

Read More Show Less
A man carries a poster in New York City during the second annual nationwide March For Science on April 14, 2018. Kena Betancur / Getty Images

By Will J. Grant

In an ideal world, people would look at issues with a clear focus only on the facts. But in the real world, we know that doesn't happen often.

People often look at issues through the prism of their own particular political identity — and have probably always done so.

Read More Show Less

YinYang / E+ / Getty Images

In a blow to the Trump administration, the Supreme Court ruled Monday to uphold a Virginia ban on mining uranium, Reuters reported.

Read More Show Less