United States
Environmental Protection
Fish and ShelOfish Program
April 2019
EPA 823-N-19-003
In This Issue
Recent Advisory News	1
EPA News	4
Other News			6
Recently Awarded Research	9
Tech and Tools		10
Recent Publications	12
Upcoming Meetings
and Conferences	13
This newsletter provides information
only. This newsletter does not
impose legally binding requirements
on the U.S. Environmental Protection
Agency (EPA), states, tribes, other
regulatoiy authorities, orthe
regulated community. The Office of
Science and Technology, Office of
Water, U.S. Environmental Protection
Agency has approved this newsletter
for publication. Mention of trade
names, products, or sen/ices does
not convey and should not be
interpreted as conveying official EPA
approval, endorsement, or
recommendation for use.
Recent Advisory News
Commonwealth of Pennsylvania 2019 Fish
Consumption Public Health Advisory
The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania has released its 2019 fish consumption public health
Health Benefits of Eating Fish
Fish are nutritious and good to eat. They are low in fat, high in protein, and provide
substantial human health benefits. Fish provide valuable vitamins and minerals and
beneficial oils that are low in saturated fat. Omega-3 fatty acids found in fish are also
beneficial, particularly in terms of cardiovascular health. Preliminary evidence suggests
that early exposure to omega-3 fats may enhance brain development as well. The federal
Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recommends that consumers eat a balanced diet,
choosing a variety of foods including fruits and vegetables, foods that are low in trans fat
and saturated fat, as well as foods rich in high fiber grains and nutrients. A diet that
includes a variety of fish and shellfish can be an important part of a balanced healthy diet.
The FDA, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), American Heart Association, and
other nutrition experts recommend eating two meals (12 ounces) of fish per week.
Following these advisories means that consumers should feel comfortable making one of
those meals (up to 8 ounces) a recreationally caught Pennsylvania sport fish.
Contaminants in Fish
While most recreationally caught sport fish in Pennsylvania are safe to eat, chemicals
such as mercury and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) have been found in some fish from
certain waters. The levels of these unavoidable chemical contaminants are usually low;
however, they could potentially be a health concern to pregnant and breast-feeding
women, women of childbearing age, and children and individuals whose diet consists of a
high percentage of fish.
Long-lasting contaminants such as PCBs, chlordane, and mercury build up in the body
over time. It may take months or years of regularly eating contaminated fish to build up
amounts that are a health concern. Health problems that may result from the
contaminants found in fish range from small changes in health that are hard to detect to
birth defects and cancer. Mothers who eat highly contaminated fish for many years before
This neivsletter provides a monthly summary of news about fish and shellfish

Fish and Shellfish Program newsletter
April 2019
Study Finds Pharmaceuticals, Other Contaminants in Chesapeake
Bay and Charleston Harbor
On November 28, 2018, NOAA reported that its scientists recently completed regional assessments of the
contaminants of emerging concern (CEC) for Chesapeake Bay, Maryland, and Charleston Harbor, South Carolina.
Conducted as part of NOAA's National Status and Trends (NS&T) Mussel Watch Program, these regional pilot
studies sampled oyster and sediment from study areas to quantify the magnitude and distribution of CECs, such as
pharmaceutical and personal care products (PPCPs), pesticides, flame retardants, new industrial chemicals, stain
resistant compounds, and endocrine-disrupting chemicals.
Results indicated that CECs are being accumulated at various
degrees in coastal resources and the environment, with
perfluorinated compounds (PFCs), the flame retardants, and
current use pesticides being the most common to both study areas.
In the Chesapeake Bay, at least one PFC and polybrominated
diphenyl ether (PBDE) flame retardant was found across all
sediment samples, with PFCs and PBDEs detected in 40 percent
and 21 percent, respectively. Alternative (non-brominated) flame
retardants were the least detected of all CEC classes. The highest
concentration CECs found in Maryland oyster tissues were linked to
the pharmaceuticals prednisone, hydrocortisone, and acetaminophen. PPCPs, on the other hand, were detected far
less frequently than PBDEs and PFCs in Maryland oyster tissue and sediment.
As in the Chesapeake Bay samples, at least one CEC was detected at each South Carolina station for both sediment
and oyster samples, and overall CEC detection frequencies followed a similar overall pattern. PFCs were the most
common in sediments and oysters. The flame retardants were also often detected in both sediments and oysters in
South Carolina samples. The highest concentrations reported in Charleston Harbor sediments, however, were for
current use pesticides.
Overall occurrence and distribution of some CEC chemicals appeared to be associated with land use from the
watershed adjacent to the survey sites, although further study is required to confirm this association. In general, the
number of reported concentrations at urban sites was elevated compared to the suburban sites in both study areas.
The same relative numbers were observed between suburban and undeveloped (or reference) sites.
For management purposes, these findings constitute unprecedented baseline information on CECs. With the
exception of an existing EPA health advisory for PFCs in drinking water, there are currently no federal standards or
guidelines to assess the maximum contaminants threshold for the majority of CEC chemicals in the environment.
Thus, although organisms in the environment may be exposed to these chemicals, it is challenging to relate
environmental concentrations of CECs to impacts on organisms. Overall, the detection of these compounds in
sediment and oyster tissue is evidence of their presence and potential accumulation in the environment and in
coastal resources.
Oyster collection in South Carolina tidal marsh. (Photo
courtesy of NOAA)

Fish and Shellfish Program newsletter
April 2019
NOAA's Mussel Watch Program has monitored the nation's coastal waters for chemical contaminants and biological
indicators of water quality since 1986. With the goal to support ecosystem management nationwide, Mussel Watch
and its sister program, the National Bioeffects Program, conduct environmental monitoring, assessment, and
research to describe the status and trends in the environmental quality of the nation's estuarine and coastal waters.
In response to recent public concerns about the widespread distribution and potential impacts of these unregulated
contaminants, NOAA's National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science, through the Mussel Watch Program, has
investigated the prevalence and magnitude of CEC chemicals in our coastal areas through a series of pilot studies.
For more information, contact Dennis Apeti at dennis.apeti@noaa.gov.
Citation: Apeti, D.A., E. WTirth, A.K. Leight, A. Mason, and E. Pisaski. 2018. An Assessment of Contaminants of
Emerging Concern in Chesapeake Bay, MD and Charleston Harbor, SC. NOAA Technical Memorandum NOS
NCCOS 240. Silver Spring, MD. 104 pp. doi:io.25923/p4nc-7m7i
Source: https://coastalscieiice.noaa.gov/news/studv-finds-pharmaceuticals-aiid-other-contammants-in-
Recently Awarded Research
NFWF Announces $521,833 in Grants to Support Sustainable
Fisheries in Six States
On December 3, 2018, the National Fish and Wildlife
Foundation (NFWF) announced $521,833 in grants to
support sustainable fisheries through fishermen and
community-led projects in California, Florida, Louisiana,
Alaska, Massachusetts, and Hawaii. The grants will
generate $780,287 in matching contributions for a total
conservation impact of more than $1.3 million.
The grants were awarded through the Fisheries
Innovation Fund (FIF), a partnership between NFWF and
NOAA. This year's projects will reduce bycatch, address the needs of recreational fisheries and enhance sustainable
economic opportunities for fishing communities around the U.S.
"NFWF is excited to support these locally led projects that will advance marine aquaculture, increase public access
for recreational anglers and build capacity in fisheries and fishing communities," said Jeff Trandahl, Executive
Director and CEO of NFWF.
Grant recipients will build capacity among fishermen and fishing communities, promote full utilization of annual
catch limits, and help implement marine aquaculture by developing new markets, increasing fishing access,
minimizing bycatch, and reducing discard mortality.
Copper rockfish. (Photo courtesy of NOAA)

Fish and Shellfish Program newsletter
April 2019
Through the app, landowners can find out if their property contains ESA-designated critical habitat, grant
applicants can focus and maximize habitat restoration proposals in areas where multiple protected species reside,
and field biologists can decipher whether their geographic position is within a protected area by loading the app on
any mobile device and using the "My Location" feature.
"This app provides a one-stop shop for
NOAA Fisheries' geospatial data
throughout Washington, Idaho, Oregon,
and California and along the coast," said
Scott Rumsey, Deputy Regional
Administrator of NOAA Fisheries' West
Coast Region. "It helps organize and
display mountains of data into
something that is truly user-friendly. It
will prove a valuable tool in helping to
visually interpret NOAA Fisheries
regulations and better understand how
our sea turtles, marine mammals, and
fish are distributed."
In addition to NOAA Fisheries data, the
app displays real-time data from external sources such as the U.S. Census Bureau, which provides congressional
district and tribal boundary information. This helps keep data and spatial relationships current. NOAA Fisheries
will continue to expand and update the app tools and incorporate new data.
Before this app, geographic data were available in many different formats and only accessible to those with
specialized GIS software to open the files. Now, anyone with a computer and an internet connection can explore the
Use the Protected Species App in any web browser. Once in, click on the "Layers" icon to access and display datasets
depicting different geographic areas. Users can draw on maps, for a truly customized experience, as well as share
"The data development for this app took five years and I'm really excited to share the final product with the
dedicated people who want protected species to recover and thrive," said Shanna Dunn, of NOAA. Fisheries West
Coast Region and app designer. "I hope that more accessible protected species data will support conservation
For more information, contact Shanna Dunn at Shanna.Dunn@noaa.gov.
Source: https://wwvv.fisheries.noaa.gov/featiire-storv/new-app-makes-endangered-species-habitat-easv-
find?ntm medium=email&utm source=govdeliverv
This data layer displays the critical habitat of protected species on the West Coast. (Photo
courtesy of NOAA)