Mercury Warning Issued For Lac Ste. Anne

Tuesday, February 03, 2009 at 14:59



Alberta has issued a health advisory to warn people who eat fish caught at a lake west of Edmonton popular with northern Saskatchewan residents.


The acting chief medical health officer says tests for mercury in walleye and northern pike have been completed for Lac Ste. Anne.


Dr. Richard Musto is warning children and women of child-bearing age to not eat the fish or reduce how much they eat.


He says the mercury levels don’t pose an immediate threat, but limiting consumption is prudent.


Lac Ste. Anne is the site of an annual Roman Catholic pilgrimage each summer that draws hundreds of people from northern Saskatchewan each year.


A similar warning has been issued for Lac la Nonne.


Mercury can damage the nervous system and there is no amount of cooking or cleaning fish that reduces the substance.


Alberta Health says mercury can be released into the air naturally and from industrial waste such as burning coal.


(includes files from The Canadian Press)