Mercury in Automotive Systems - A White Paper
Mercury is a naturally occurring element and therefore neither created nor destroyed, but pushed and pulled throughout the biosphere. Mercury released in vapor form to the atmosphere can be transported and redeposited via atmospheric deposition. Recent international, federal and state regulatory initiatives have been directed toward effective use management and minimization of toxic substances in manufacturing and commerce. The concern is that these substances bioaccumulate in the food chain, posing a threat to human health and the environment. The most significant human health exposure to mercury is the dietary intake of fish and fish products, since mercury biomagnifies in aquatic species. The Michigan Environmental Science Board (MESB), a task force formed by the state of Michigan, has found a small margin of safety between background (i.e., natural) levels of mercury exposure and concentrations that can cause harm to humans. At the national level, the U.S.