Friday, April 26, 2013
Pharmaceutical pollution is the focus of a new investigative series launched this week by the Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism. Part of the group's Water Watch Wisconsin project, the eight stories published so far have covered everything from the impact pharmaceuticals on fish to what Great Lakes states are doing to keep these chemicals from entering waterways.
The stories focus on the impacts of endocrine disruptors, chemicals that interfere with hormonal processes in humans and animals. These chemicals have been linked to a range of reproductive problems in fathead minnows, including decreased sperm counts and infertility.
Among the prevention strategies discussed in the series is a recent executive order in Minnesota that prevents state agencies from buying products containing the antibacterial triclosan. The decision–the first of its kind in the country–comes in the wake of growing evidence that the chemical commonly used in soaps, cleaners, and plastics poses a threat to aquatic fish and wildlife.
To read the stories published so far and to follow the ongoing series, visit www.wisconsinwatch.org/projects/hormones.