Presented by Hannah Horowitz
Mercury is a potent neurotoxin. For thousands of years, humans have altered mercury cycling in the environment by introducing massive amounts of mercury to surface water, soils, and air, through mining and burning coal. Once in the surface environment, mercury can threaten human and wildlife health, is transported globally through the air, and continues to have an impact for hundreds of years before it is sequestered at the bottom of the ocean. In order to craft policies to protect human health, we must understand how much mercury humans have contributed to the environment over time. I will examine these concepts through my recent research estimating the environmental impact of mercury used intentionally in products.