Lehigh cement plant says it is cutting mercury emissions by 90 percent

Jun 4, 2011 Full story: San Jose Mercury News

The Lehigh Permanente cement plant announced Friday it is using new technology to substantially reduce its mercury emissions, which have worried Cupertino, Los Altos and Los Altos Hills residents for a long time.

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#1 Jun 5, 2011
Cement plants emit mercury...

Since: Aug 08

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#2 Jun 5, 2011
EPA triples the amount of mercury allowed in power plants...

1. Psychological Disturbances (erethysm)
Irritability, Nervousness, Fits of Anger, Memory Loss, Lack of Attention, Depression, Low Self Confidence, Anxiety, Drowsiness, Shyness/timidity, Decline of Intellect, Insomnia, Low Self Control.

2. Oral Cavity Disorders
Bleeding Gums, White Patches - Mouth, Stomatitis, Bone Loss Around Teeth, Loosening of Teeth, Ulcers of Gums- Palate- Tongue, Excessive Saliva, Burning of Mouth, Foul Breath, Gum Pigmentation, Metalic Taste.

3. Gastrointestinal Effects
Abdominal Cramps, Colitis, Crohn's disease, Gastrointestinal Problems, Diarrhea.

4. Systemic Effects
Cardiovascular, Irregular Heart Beat, Changes in Blood Pressure, Feeble or Irregular Pulse, Pain or Pressure in Chest

5. Neurologic
Chronic or Frequent Headaches, Dizziness, Ringing or Noises in Ears, Fine Tremors (Hands, Feet, Eye Lids, Tongue)

6. Respiratory
Persistant Cough, Emphysema, Shallow or Irregular Breathing.

7. Immunological
Allergies, Asthma, Rhinitis, Sinusitis, Swollen Lymph Nodes in Neck

8. Endocrine
Subnormal Temperature, Cold Clammy Hands & Feet, Excessive Perspiration, Muscle Weakness, Fatigue, Hypoxia, Edema, Loss of Appetite, Loss of Weight, Joint Pain

"...The primary symptoms of mercury-poisoning are vague psychic ones. Short-time memory deteriorates. You will find it difficult to concentrate on tasks which require attention and thinking. It is easier to execute tasks that are well known rather than to learn something new. You avoid social contacts which demand that you get out of your introvert behavior. You loose your temper easily and switch between different moods for no particular reason. Little by little, a more physical kind of exhaustion is added to the condition. More and more effort is required to initiate activities and sometimes break things due to inability to co-ordinate your movements with your visual impressions (ataxia). Occasional headaches, minor involuntary muscle spasms or ticks within groups of muscles can also appear. Hands and feet become easily cold, attacks of dizziness or vertigo can occur, and periodically you may find it difficult to focus your eyes and to see clearly. Joint and muscle pains, stiffness, lumbago and similar symptoms often appear at an early stage. They can be caused or increased by low availability of the trace element selenium. Nervous heart, sometimes accompanied by a week pulse, sometimes by a hard pulse, creates a feeling of anxiety. You don't sleep well, you wake up stiff and never feel thoroughly rested. As a whole you need more sleep than before, and you are constantly tired. Some individuals develop pronounced intestinal and stomach disturbances. Bloating is common and diarrhea can alternate with constipation. From 50 to 200 micrograms mercury from amalgam daily passes the gastrointestinal tract. There is usually irritation where mercury first interacts with tissues. The upper respiratory tract easily becomes chronically inflamed and symptoms in mouth appear. The gums bleed when you brush your teeth, red and white irritations (lichen, leukoplakia) araise, blisters and sensitivity to certain nutritives develop, ypur teeth ache, the whole jaw can become more or less inflamed, and some persons develop sinusitis. Metal taste in your mouth is a direct sign of metal-poisoning (mercury, copper). The more poisoned you are, the more serious and chronic your problems become. The piruitary gland will be affected which often leads to frequent urination. When the thyroid gland is affected secondary effects on metabolism can appear. Both glands accumulate mercury. neurological symptoms such as numbness, hypersensitivity and paralysis exacerbate. It is often hard to determine if the cause is in the nervous or circulatory systems..."

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