Today, Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) introduced the Mercury Pollution Reduction Act (S. 1428) in the U.S. Senate. The bill, co-sponsored by Senators Benjamin Cardin (D-MD), Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) and Russ Feingold (D-WI), would phase-out the use of mercury technology in domestic chlorine production within two years. Specifically, it would require four renegade chlorine plants in the U.S. to transition to mercury-free technology for the production of chlorine and caustic soda.
Youmay recall that I postedrecently about the House version of the bill, H.R. 2190. The House bill was voted out of subcommittee for consideration by the full Energy and Commerce Committee. In addition, over 10,000 of our WaveMaker activists have emailed their Representative and/or Senator about the bill.
While 95 percent of chlorine produced in the United States uses amercury-free process, four U.S. plants have continued to use outdated,mercury-dependent technology to produce chlorine and caustic soda.Mercury pollution contaminates seafood and can affect the health ofhumans and wildlife exposed to it.
“Mercurycontamination in our air, land and water is a serious health threat;and when there’s technology readily available to reducemercury pollution, we should use it,” said SenatorWhitehouse, a member of the Senate Committee on the Environment andPublic Works. “I’m grateful for Oceana’swork to highlight the dangers of mercury and appreciate theirsupport.”