Mercury Pollution: A Transdisciplinary Treatment

Sharon L. Zuber, Michael C. Newman

August 22, 2011 by CRC Press
Reference - 288 Pages - 54 B/W Illustrations
ISBN 9781439833841 - CAT# K11540


Add to Wish List
FREE Standard Shipping!


  • Contains photographs of the Minamata tragedy by W. Eugene Smith and Aileen M. Smith and a Foreword by Aileen M. Smith
  • Details how humans have dangerously disrupted natural cycling of mercury within the earth’s soil, air, and water
  • Explores the statistics of mercury risk, including how and where these data can be found, interpreted, and used
  • Supplies a model for studying environmental problems using mercury as a case study
  • Discusses environmental regulations and international treaties relating to mercury
  • Traces mercury's usefulness and dangers from a historical perspective
  • Includes case studies and provides links to websites with specific resources


How does mercury get out of the ground and into our food? Is tuna safe to eat? What was the Minamata Disaster? Mercury Pollution: A Transdisciplinary Treatment addresses these questions and more. The editors weave interdisciplinary threads into a tapestry that presents a more complete picture of the effects of mercury pollution and provides new ways to think about the environment.

The remarkable features that make mercury so useful—and poisonous—have given rise to many stories laid out in rich objective detail, carefully detailing medical, epidemiological, or historical insight, but sidestepping the human experience. A technically rich book that only touches on the human consequences of mercury poisoning cannot fully portray the anguish, confusion, and painful deaths that are the consequence of mercury pollution. Therefore, the editors purposely step out of the conventional scientific framework for discussing mercury pollution to explore the wider human experience.

This book clarifies how we are all connected to mercury, how we absorb it through the food we eat and the air we breathe, and how we release it as a consequence of our new technologies. It tackles interesting environmental issues without being overly technical and uses mercury as a case study and model for studying environmental problems. The book uses discussions of the issues surrounding mercury pollution to illustrate how an interdisciplinary vantage is necessary to solve environmental problems.

Read an article in the SETAC Globe by Michael C. Newman and Sharon L. Zuber at

Share this Title