pollution reduction bills introduced in five Midwestern
WASHINGTON -- Legislators from five states in the Midwest
and the Great Lakes have introduced state legislation aimed
at reducing mercury pollution from coal-burning power plants
and other sources.
State lawmakers belonging to the National Caucus of Environmental
Legislators hope to convince their fellow senators and representatives
to pass statewide laws limiting mercury emissions.
Members of the caucus from Illinois, Michigan, Minnesota,
Ohio and Wisconsin have been working together to address
mercury pollution on a regional basis, and on Feb. 4 they
announced they were introducing initiatives in their respective
The proposed legislation varies by state, but the proposals
include limits on the sale of mercury-containing products,
labeling requirements and tougher rules for mercury emissions.
"Acting regionally, we can send a collective message
to Washington that state policymakers are concerned about
protecting the environment and the health of our constituents,"
said Jane Krentz, Midwest coordinator for the National
Caucus of Environmental Legislators.
Mercury from coal-fired power plants settles into lakes,
rivers and oceans and contaminates fish that may be consumed
by humans. Mercury contamination is of particular concern
to babies and developing fetuses.