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HEALTH CONSULTATION


HUDSON RIVER PCBS
GLEN FALLS, WARREN COUNTY, NEW YORK



APPENDIX D- CHRONOLOGY OF PCB ACTIONS REGARDING HUDSON RIVER FISHERIES


Date

Action

3/18/72

Proposed PCB tolerance level of 5.0 ppm in fish flesh - US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) action. [37 FR 5705-5707]

12/6/74

Temporary tolerance level of 5.0 ppm adopted by FDA for fish. [39 FR 42746-42748]

Fall 1975

Finding of elevated PCB levels in Hudson River fish.

2/25/76

New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYS DEC) Regulation (6 NYCRR 12.19) adopted prohibiting taking and possession of fish in the Hudson River and its tributaries to the first impassable falls from Fort Edward to the Federal dam at Troy. Taking of American eel prohibited throughout Hudson River. Health advisories issued concurrently.

2/26/76

Amended 6 NYCRR 12.19 to permit sale of commercially taken Atlantic sturgeon over four feet in length, goldfish and American shad.

7/14/76

The taking and sale of bait-fish in the estuarine portion of the Hudson River permitted; includes bait fish as defined in regulation plus anchovies, killifish and silversides.

7/19/76

Menhaden added as bait fish in 6 NYCRR 12.19.

4/1/77

FDA proposed lowering the temporary tolerance level for PCB in fish from 5.0 ppm to 2.0 ppm. [42 FR 17487-17494]

10/14/77

Taking of American eel in Harlem and East Rivers prohibited (6 NYCRR 12.15). Renumbered to 6 NYCRR 11.2 on 8/22/78.

Renumbered and divided regulations on Hudson River fisheries 6 NYCRR 12.19 becomes 6 NYCRR 11.4 for striped bass and 6 NYCRR 11.2 for other Hudson fisheries.

3/10/78

PCB "hotshot" dredging proposal announced by DEC.

7/25/78

Data for collections of fish before and after termination of PCB discharges publically released by DEC. No significant change noted. PCB levels found to be up to 50 times the temporary tolerance level of 5.0 ppm.

11/10/78

Blueback herring, alewife, Atlantic tomcod and blue crab removed from commercial fishing closure. Striped bass commercial closure reaffirmed.

6/29/79

FDA announced final rule of 2.0 ppm PCB in fish effective 9/28/79.[44 FR 38330]

10/5/79

FDA confirmed date of final rule for PCBs in foods, but stayed final tolerance for fish and shellfish pending hearings. [44 FR 57389]

5/1/81

FDA announced hearings on "magnitude of the human food loss" from reduction of tolerance. [46 FR 24551-24553]

6/10/81

NYS DOH issued health advisory for blue crabs due to cadmium and PCB contamination.

10/9/81

Striped bass commercial fishing closure reaffirmed based on 1981 spring collections.

2/23/82

Emergency regulations enacted to permit taking and sale of American eel to foreign countries. Strict limitations placed on sales and foreign certification of acceptance.

Commercial fishing regulation (6 NYCRR 11.2) restructured to allow all species except white catfish, white perch, carp (except as bait), and goldfish (except as ornamentals). Commercial fishing for striped bass remains prohibited under 6 NYCRR 11.4.

3/9/82

US FDA announced availability of initial decision (issued 2/8/82) regarding reduction of PCB tolerance for fish and shellfish. [47 FR 10079-10080]

4/29/82

Emergency regulations which permitted the taking and sale of American eel to foreign countries expired. All certifications were found to be unacceptable. Remainder of the restructured regulation (6 NYCRR 11.2) made permanent.

10/15/82

Striped bass commercial fishing closure reaffirmed based on PCB data from spring 1982. Findings of dibenzofurans (a contaminant of PCB) and 2,3,7,8-TCDD (dioxin) in striped bass also announced.

12/13/82

Commercial fishing restrictions and health advisories announced by New Jersey for New Jersey portions of Hudson River and New York Harbor. Restrictions essentially echo New York restrictions.

12/30/82

EPA Administrator Anne Gearstick announces withholding $20 million allocated by Congress from New York for PCB dredging project. Commissioner Robert Flacks denounces action.

10/11/83

Contaminant study of waterfowl from Hudson River and other state waters announced. Study to be completed in 1985.

11/15/83

Striped bass commercial fishing closure in Hudson River again reaffirmed. Future fishing regulations for striped bass discussed with commercial fishermen. PCB levels close to the PCB temporary tolerance level of 5.0 ppm.

5/10/84

Federal funds for PCB cleanup released in an agreement that ends state lawsuit against EPA. Agreement signed in US District Court in Manhattan. Another suit for same cause had been filed by several environmental groups and the Hudson River Fishermen's Association.

5/22/84

FDA announces adoption of new PCB tolerance level for fish of 2.0 ppm, effective August 20, 1984. [49 FR 21514-21529]

6/25/84

Based on elevated PCB levels, NYS DOH added advisory to EAT NONE for carp and goldfish taken from the Hudson between Troy and Catskill.

11/15/84

NYS DOH added advisories for several Hudson River species, based on reduction of the PCB tolerance to 2 ppm.

12/1/84

Emergency order (6 NYCRR 36.1) prohibited use of any gill nets in Hudson River during striped bass closed season (12/1-3/14). Regulation made permanent on.

2/8/85

6 NYCRR 11.2 amended to prohibit commercial fishing for several additional minor fisheries (black crappie, brown bullhead, and pumpkinseed).

3/31/85

Governor Mario Cuomo announced several actions to be taken regarding striped bass in Marine District. They include: closing commercial fisheries in New York Harbor, the New York Bight and waters off western Long Island, a certification and tagging program for striped bass caught off eastern Long Island, restrictive health advisories for all striped bass, and a program of financial assistance to affected commercial fishermen.

5/1/85

Emergency regulations (6 NYCRR 11.5, 11.6 and 43.1) filed effective 5/8/85 to implement regulation of commercial harvest and sale of striped bass. Refilled on 7/12/85, 9/10/85 and 11/7/85.

5/2/85

Details of the striped bass certification and tagging program announced for eastern Long Island commercial striped bass fishery. New intensive PCB study formalized for striped bass.

2/18/86

New Policy on Contaminants in Fish adopted by NYS DEC. Policy formalizes NYS DEC procedures when contaminants are found in recreational and commercial fisheries.

4/18/86

Public meetings announced to discuss new findings of PCB in striped bass in the Marine District and potential regulatory alternatives.

5/5/86

Emergency regulations filed, effective 5/8/86, to prohibit all possession and sale of striped bass in New York. 6 NYCRR 11.3, 11.4, 11.5 and 11.6 consolidated into 6 NYCRR 11.3. 6 NYCRR 43.1 amended. Emergency regulation extended on 7/3/86.

7/15/86

Permanent regulation adopted prohibiting commercial and recreational taking, possession and sale of striped bass statewide. 6 NYCRR 11.3 and 43.1 consolidated into 6 NYCRR 11.3.

7/13/87

NYS DOH added advisories to EAT NONE for walleye and striped bass and EAT NO MORE THAN A MEAL PER MONTH for bluefish, northern pike taken from Troy to and including the New York Harbor.

6/21/88

NYS DOH added advisory to EAT NO MORE THAN A MEAL PER MONTH for bluefish from marine waters.

4/16/92

NYS DOH revised advisories for the Hudson south of the Troy dam for (1) black crappie, brown bullhead and pumpkinseed to EAT NO MORE THAN ONE MEAL PER WEEK from eat no more than one meal per month and (2) walleye and largemouth bass to EAT NO MORE THAN ONE MEAL PER MONTH from eat none. An advisory for smallmouth bass was added to EAT NO MORE THAN ONE MEAL PER MONTH. The advisory was revised for striped bass from the Tappan Zee Bridge south to and including the New York Harbor to EAT NO MORE THAN ONE MEAL PER MONTH from eat none. These changes were in response to new data which showed decreases in PCB levels.

4/21/94

NYS DOH revised advisories for the Hudson River between Troy and Catskill to EAT NONE for all species except American shad and to EAT NO MORE THAN A MEAL PER MONTH for most species from the Hudson south of Catskill. New data showed that PCB levels had increased in most species. Simplified advisory format was adopted to more clearly describe the advisories.

4/19/95

NYS DEC Commissioner Zapata requested that NYS DOH review the public health implications of allowing catch-and-release fishing in the Hudson River between Hudson Falls and Troy.

5/1/95

NYS DOH Commissioner DeBuono certified that there is "no compelling public health reason for keeping the Upper Hudson River closed to recreational fishing.

5/18/95

Changed advisory for Hudson River south of Catskill from "all species" to species-by-species advisory to remove confusion regarding several salt water fish that are found in these waters. Added a clear definition for the waters of the New York Harbor where advisories apply.

5/31/95

Governor Pataki announced NYS DEC proposal to amend 6 NYCRR 10.x and 11.3 to permit catch-and-release fishing in the Hudson River between Hudson Falls and Troy.

6/14/95

NYS DEC proposed to amend 6 NYCRR 10.x and 11.3 to permit catch-and-release fishing in the Hudson River between Hudson Falls and Troy.

7/31/95

Comment period on the proposed amendment closed after two public meetings and hearings on 7/17 and 7/24.

8/30/95

Recreational catch-and-release fishing permitted on the Hudson River between Hudson Falls and Troy. Effective date of 6 NYCRR

4/4/96

NYS DOH revised advisory for striped bass taken from Jamaica Bay from eat no more than one meal per month to EAT NO MORE THAN ONE MEAL PER WEEK.



-modified from an original by
Lawrence C. Skinner
and Edward G. Horn
of August 11, 1986
September, 1998

 

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