Monday March 27, 2023

The News Tribune

New warnings on eating some catches from the Columbia River have been issued by the Washington state Department of Health.

For all of the Columbia River, the recommended limit from eating lamprey, a culturally important food for tribes, is now no more than four meals per month for adults.

Some vulnerable populations — children and women pregnant or nursing — should eat no more than two meals per month. The Department of Health’s concern is the PCB and mercury levels found in tissue of lamprey as shown by data of the Columbia River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission.

PCBs were used as coolants and lubricants in electrical equipment until their manufacture was stopped in the United States in 1977, but PCBs remain in the environment and can be taken up by fish.

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