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HEALTH CONSULTATION

NAVAL AIR STATION PATUXENT RIVER
(a/k/a PATUXENT NAVAL AIR STATION
PATUXENT, ST. MARY'S COUNTY, MARYLAND


PURPOSE AND STATEMENT OF ISSUES

The Final Release Public Health Assessment for Naval Air Station Patuxent River (1) (NAS Patuxent River) established a consumption limit for fish harvested from any of the six on-base ponds where fishing is permitted. Based on concentrations of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) found in pond fish, the limit was set at two fish meals/month (eight-ounce portion) and 19 fish meals per year for no more than seven years, effectively a lifetime limit of 133 fish meals.

This health consultation is conducted in response to citizen concerns expressed at Restoration Advisory Board meetings that this consumption limit might not be sufficiently restrictive to be protective of populations considered to be more sensitive, defined to include pregnant women, embryos, fetuses, lactating mothers, and breast-fed neonates and infants.


FINDINGS

Eating fish from NAS Patuxent River ponds in compliance with the published consumption limit poses no public health hazard, even to potentially sensitive populations including (1) pregnant women and their unborn embryos or fetuses or (2) lactating mothers and their breast-fed neonates or infants.


BACKGROUND

The Naval Air Station Patuxent River is located in St. Mary’s County, Maryland, near the city of Lexington Park, and covers an area of approximately 6800 acres (10.5 square miles). The facility is bounded on the north by the Patuxent River, on the east and south by the Chesapeake Bay, and on the west by State Highway 235. The base population is about 15,900 persons.

The Final Release of the NAS Patuxent River Public Health Assessment (PHA) is dated August 18, 1997. Sections I and IIA of the PHA address the issue of consumption limits on fish caught from on-base ponds, while Appendix C details calculation of the consumption limit.



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