Puget Sound Partnership Resolution on Fish Consumption Rate

The Puget Sound Partnership’s Leadership Council passed a strongly worded resolution last week in support of raising our state’s unrealistic fish consumption rate. The rate is an estimate of how much seafood we eat and is an important part of developing water quality standards. It is also currently well below any realistic measure of how much fish we consume.

From the resolution:

WHEREAS, the current assumptions about fish consumption rates in Washington are outdated and too low to protect vulnerable populations that consume higher rates of fish and shellfish from the Sound including native Americans, Asians, Pacific Islanders; and

WHEREAS, assumptions about fish consumption will inform a number of near-term regulatory decisions about clean water including updates to the Sediment Management Standards (rulemaking ongoing) and updates to the Surface Water Quality Standard (rulemaking scheduled to begin in 2013);

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED: that the Washington State Department of Ecology (DOE) should, as soon as possible establish realistic fish consumption rates that are reflective of actual consumption rates of vulnerable populations who consume fish and shellfish from the Sound at a subsistence level and children who, by virtue of lower body mass may be disproportionately affected by toxins in their food supply…

This resolution comes just weeks after the state Department of Ecology announced a change in the process of updating the consumption rate that would delay any increase.

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