According to the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, children, pregnant women and women who might one day want to be pregnant should not eat any fish from most of the waters in New Jersey. It's safe for men to eat a small amount: about one catfish or one eel per year.
But the authorities advise against anyone eating fish from the Lower Passaic River because of the toxic chemicals, including Agent Orange, that have been dumped there over the years. The fish contaminated with the waste could cause cancer, liver damage, birth defects and reproductive issues in people who eat them, an advisory from the DEP and the New Jersey Department of Health warns.
Fifty-four of the companies who may be responsible for polluting the Passaic ... are now funding a fish exchange program...
To participate, residents can bring their contaminated catch to a tent in Lyndhurst, N.J., and swap it for ... tilapia...
A fish swap is an appropriate short-term solution ... on the condition that the rivers be cleaned up by a set date, with penalties for every day over the set date.
We had a horrid polution problem in the Spokand River because of the mines upslope from us. Our river ran milk-white and was contaminated with lead, among other poisons. After masive cleanup efforts, the river runs color-free but continues to produce fish contaminated with poisons.
Yikes! Coincidentally, I took a tilapia out of the freezer to thaw for supper tonight. Hope it's not contaminated!