Fish Contaminant Goals and Advisory Tissue Levels for Evaluating Methylmercury, Chlordane, DDTs, Dieldrin, PCBs, Selenium, and Toxaphene in California Sport Fish
This report describes the process of developing Fish Contaminant Goals and Advisory Tissue Levels for evaluating methylmercury, chlordane, DDTs, dieldrin, PCBs, selenium, and toxaphene, common contaminants in California sport ﬁsh. Fish provide unique nutritional beneﬁts while also serving as a signiﬁcant exposure pathway for several chemicals of concern. Fish Contaminant Goals (FCGs) are estimates of contaminant levels in ﬁsh that pose no signiﬁcant health risk to individuals consuming sport ﬁsh at a standard consumption rate of eight ounces per week (32 g/day), prior to cooking, over a lifetime and can provide a starting point for OEHHA to assist other agencies that wish to develop ﬁsh tissue-based criteria with a goal toward pollution mitigation or elimination. FCGs prevent consumers from being exposed to more than the daily reference dose for non-carcinogens or to a risk level greater than 1xl0-6 for carcinogens (not more than one additional cancer case in a population of 1,000,000 people consuming ﬁsh at the given consumption rate over a lifetime). FCGs are based solely on public health considerations without regard to economic considerations, technical feasibility, or the counterbalancing beneﬁts of ﬁsh consumption.
Advisory Tissue Levels (ATLs), while still conferring no signiﬁcant health risk to individuals consuming sport ﬁsh in the quantities shown over a lifetime, were developed with the recognition that there are unique health beneﬁts associated with ﬁsh consumption and that the advisory process should be expanded beyond a simple risk paradigm in order to best promote the overall health of the ﬁsh consumer. ATLs provide a number of recommended ﬁsh servings that correspond to the range of contaminant concentrations found in ﬁsh and are used to provide consumption advice to prevent consumers from being exposed to more than the average daily reference dose for non-carcinogens or to a risk level greater than 1x10-4 for carcinogens (not more than one additional cancer case in a population of 10,000 people consuming ﬁsh at the given consumption rate over a lifetime). ATLs are designed to encourage consumption of ﬁsh that can be eaten in quantities likely to provide signiﬁcant health beneﬁts, while discouraging consumption of ﬁsh that, because of contaminant concentrations, should not be eaten or cannot be eaten in amounts recommended for improving overall health (eight ounces total, prior to cooking, per week). ATLs are one of the criteria that will be used by OEHHA for issuing ﬁsh consumption guidelines.
For further information contact:
Pesticide and Environmental Toxicology Branch
Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment
California Environmental Protection Agency
1515 Clay Street, 16"‘ Floor
Oakland, California 94612
Telephone: (5 10) 622-3170