NFI: eNGOs way off on tuna, mercury
Editor’s note: The following is a letter to the editor submitted by Mary Anne Hansan, VP of the National Fisheries Institute. The letter ran in Wednesday’s edition of the Washington Times.
Thanks to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), everyone will breathe a little easier in the new year, apparently, as the agency begins enforcing tougher emission standards on coal-fired power plants. It was a cause celebre for the Sierra Club and its inside-the-Beltway campaign “Beyond Coal,” which exposed Washingtonians to endless ads of coughing babies and tuna-fish sandwiches.
What’s the connection between power plants and tuna-fish sandwiches? There is none.
So what gives?
A tuna-fish sandwich is iconic — it evokes memories of brown-bag lunches, picnics and late-night snacks. In a word: wholesome. Which is why, perhaps, activists were quick to conflate it with “coal on whole wheat.” A Sierra Club executive told a reporter recently, “Mercury pollution from coal-fired plants affects us every day, from the can of tuna fish we eat to the air we breathe.”
It was a catchy quote, but entirely untrue.