Johan “Joop” Varekamp, Harold T. Stearns Professor of Earth Science, professor of earth & environmental sciences, professor of environmental studies, commented in a story on WFSB Eyewitness News 3 about dangerously high mercury levels in fish caught in Connecticut waters. The heavy metal can be toxic and can have long-term health effects, particularly for pregnant women and other vulnerable populations.
“I think our biggest discovery was the western part of Connecticut is severely polluted with mercury as a result of the historic hat making industry,” Varekamp told WFSB. He said mercury is “what we call the legacy contaminant” from “all the industries that don’t exist anymore, but the stuff is still there. It doesn’t go away.”