Brunswick, Georgia Plant Contamination Poses Risk for Jacksonville, Florida Children and Others

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The contamination caused by the closed LCP Chemicals factory in Brunswick, Georgia may be affecting the fish consumed by Jacksonville, Florida residents and their children. Atlantic bottlenose dolphins in the area have been found to have record high levels of polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB), acquired by eating contaminated fish.

PCB is an industrial chemical that is believed to be a carcinogen. The director of the marine mammal office of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Teri Rowles, said that contamination from the Brunswick site may be mobilized both up and down the east coast as contaminated prey fish move about. Biologists are planning to test the PCB levels of fish found off the Jacksonville coastline. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) will also be conducting a study of Georgian’s who eat local seafood on a regular basis.

The PCB poisoned dolphins had weak immune systems, low thyroid hormones and enzyme build-ups in their livers. Low thyroid activity in children can stunt development and cause fatigue, weakness and later reproductive problems. PCBs are especially hazardous for pregnant women, who might pass the effects of the pollution on to their children. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) took over cleanup at the plant after LCP went bankrupt about fifteen years ago. While the most hazardous materials have been cleaned up for a long time, the EPA is still looking at a plan for long term remediation. Read more details of the possible fish contamination along the Jacksonville coastline at Chemical causes high contamination levels in Atlantic dolphins.