1. The US EPA has estimated a safe daily intake for methylmercury of 0.1 µg/kg body weight per day. This was derived by applying a safety factor of 10 to allow for certain uncertainties to a "benchmark dose" of 1 µg/kg body weight per day derived from a number of studies as detailed in the full UNEP report. One important study was conducted in the Faroe Islands where fish containing significant levels of mercury form a large part of the diet. The benchmark dose in this case was the dose at which there was less than a 5% chance that double the normal number of children would achieve scores in tests that would indicate delays in development of attention, verbal memory and language.
See: Chapter 4 of the full UNEP Report, Section 4.2.1 , paragraphs 265 to 269.

2. The Working Group that prepared this assessment, in line with its mandate, did not assess the potential effects of exposures to elemental mercury vapour from dental amalgams or reach any conclusions about whether or not dental amalgams cause adverse effects. This remains a matter of scientific debate.
See: Chapter 4 of the full UNEP Report, Section 4.3 , paragraph 284.

3. The main text of the full UNEP report relating to this point specifically refers to forest soils.
See: Chapter 5 of the full UNEP Report, Section 5.3.1 , paragraph 391

4. Based on:
Chapter 6 of the full UNEP Report, Section 1.3.4 , paragraph 270.

Related publication:
Mercury homeMercury
Other Figures & Tables on this publication:


Mercury Policy Project

Standard IARC degrees of evidence of carcinogenicity