Mercury Pollution and Fertilizer Plants
The Environmental Protection Agency requires 30 industrial facilities located in Florida to report the amount of mercury compounds disposed of or released from their plants annually.
Mosaic Fertilizer LLC owns and operates 4 of the top 5 facilities for mercury compound disposals or releases in Florida.
According to the most recent data available from the EPA Explorer Toxic Release Inventory, the Total On- and Off-site Disposal or Other Releases for Mosaic Fertilizer, LLC operations in Florida is11,079 pounds of mercury compounds for 2017.
NEW WALES PLANT (POLK COUNTY) 4,849 lbs.
RIVERVIEW PLANT (HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY) 3,100 lbs.
BARTOW PLANT (POLK COUNTY) 2,800 lbs.
PLANT CITY (HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY) 330 lbs.
United States Environmental Protection Agency. TRI Explorer Dataset Internet database. Retrieved March 18, 2019. https://www.epa.gov/toxics-release-inventory-tri-program
Mosaic Fertilizer, LLC claims to have a commitment to environmental stewardship and conservation while strip mining and processing phosphate ore in Florida. Mosaic is one of the largest phosphate mining companies in the world with operations in ten countries. Mosaic is exploiting the air, land and water resources in Florida to support their multinational interests.
Mercury is a toxic pollutant that significantly impacts human health and the environment. Mercury can enter the food chain and eventually make its way to the dinner table in the form of marine and fresh water fish and shellfish. Mercury is extremely toxic and there is no safe level of exposure for humans. Mercury can cause brain damage, particularly in children under the age of six.
Mercury pollution is a known killer of the endangered Florida Panther. Great egrets, bald eagles, and wood storks feeding primarily on fish in the Everglades have tested positive for toxic levels of mercury.
Human health risks associated with mercury become economic costs for people exposed to mercury. Mercury pollution threatens tourism as well as the region’s recreational and commercial fishing industries.
Until there is a link between the mining and processing of phosphate and phosphogypsum waste disposal, we will never fully realize the actual public health and environmental impact the phosphate industry has on Florida.