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Title: An assessment of mercury emissions and health risks from a coal-fired power plant

Abstract

Title 3 of the 1990 Clean Air Act Amendments (CAAA) mandated that the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) evaluate the need to regulate mercury emissions from electric utilities. In support of this forthcoming regulatory analysis the U.S. DOE, sponsored a risk assessment project at Brookhaven (BNL) to evaluate methylmercury (MeHg) hazards independently. In the US MeHg is the predominant way of exposure to mercury originated in the atmosphere. In the BNL study, health risks to adults resulting from Hg emissions from a hypothetical 1,000 MW coal-fired power plant were estimated using probabilistic risk assessment techniques. This study showed that the effects of emissions of a single power plant may double the background exposures to MeHg resulting from consuming fish obtained from a localized area near the power plant. Even at these more elevated exposure levels, the attributable incidence in mild neurological symptoms was estimated to be quite small, especially when compared with the estimated background incidence in the population. The current paper summarizes the basic conclusions of this assessment and highlights issues dealing with emissions control and environmental transport.

Authors:
; ;  [1]
  1. Brookhaven National Lab., Upton, NY (United States). Analytical Sciences Div.
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Brookhaven National Lab., Upton, NY (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE, Washington, DC (United States)
OSTI Identifier:
10104530
Report Number(s):
BNL-61080; CONF-940853-12
ON: DE95003963;; TRN: AHC29503%%69
DOE Contract Number:  
AC02-76CH00016
Resource Type:
Conference
Resource Relation:
Conference: Summer meeting of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers,Denver, CO (United States),14-17 Aug 1994; Other Information: PBD: [1994]
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
01 COAL, LIGNITE, AND PEAT; 20 FOSSIL-FUELED POWER PLANTS; FOSSIL-FUEL POWER PLANTS; AIR POLLUTION CONTROL; HEALTH HAZARDS; METHYLMERCURY; PROBABILITY; STACK DISPOSAL; RISK ASSESSMENT; 016000; 010800; 200400; 200200; HEALTH AND SAFETY; WASTE MANAGEMENT

Citation Formats

Fthenakis, V M, Lipfert, F, and Moskowitz, P. An assessment of mercury emissions and health risks from a coal-fired power plant. United States: N. p., 1994. Web.
Fthenakis, V M, Lipfert, F, & Moskowitz, P. An assessment of mercury emissions and health risks from a coal-fired power plant. United States.
Fthenakis, V M, Lipfert, F, and Moskowitz, P. Thu . "An assessment of mercury emissions and health risks from a coal-fired power plant". United States. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/10104530.
@article{osti_10104530,
title = {An assessment of mercury emissions and health risks from a coal-fired power plant},
author = {Fthenakis, V M and Lipfert, F and Moskowitz, P},
abstractNote = {Title 3 of the 1990 Clean Air Act Amendments (CAAA) mandated that the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) evaluate the need to regulate mercury emissions from electric utilities. In support of this forthcoming regulatory analysis the U.S. DOE, sponsored a risk assessment project at Brookhaven (BNL) to evaluate methylmercury (MeHg) hazards independently. In the US MeHg is the predominant way of exposure to mercury originated in the atmosphere. In the BNL study, health risks to adults resulting from Hg emissions from a hypothetical 1,000 MW coal-fired power plant were estimated using probabilistic risk assessment techniques. This study showed that the effects of emissions of a single power plant may double the background exposures to MeHg resulting from consuming fish obtained from a localized area near the power plant. Even at these more elevated exposure levels, the attributable incidence in mild neurological symptoms was estimated to be quite small, especially when compared with the estimated background incidence in the population. The current paper summarizes the basic conclusions of this assessment and highlights issues dealing with emissions control and environmental transport.},
doi = {},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {1994},
month = {12}
}

Conference:
Other availability
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