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9. What further information is needed on environmental risks of dental amalgams?

    The SCHER opinion states:

    3.4 Question 4

    If the Committee under its work finds out that more information is needed, for one or more questions, the Committee is asked to provide a detailed list on what this kind of information is needed to carry out the tasks.

    From the responses given in the previous sections, it is clear that the information presently available does not allow to comprehensively assessing the environmental risks and indirect health effects from the use of dental amalgam in the Member States of the EU 27.

    To allow this type of assessment, the following information is required:

    • More specific information on possible regional-specific differences in the use, release and fate of Hg originating from dental amalgam. This includes detailed quantitative information on the use and release pattern in all EU 27 countries, possible country-specific abatement measures, and differences in the fate of mercury due to regional-specific municipal wastewater treatment and sludge application practices.
    • A comprehensive and updated data compilation on the effects to humans and (various) environmental species of Hg and methylmercury.
    • A more comprehensive evaluation of atmospheric emissions and further deposition of mercury from crematoria, taking into account EU-wide practices and possible region-specific local scenarios.
    • A comprehensive literature review of the bioaccumulation and biomagnification of methylmercury under different EU conditions.
    • A detailed comparison of the relative contribution of dental Hg to the overall mercury pool – originating from intended and non-intended Hg – in the environment.

    Source & ©: SCHER,  The environmental risks and indirecthealth effects of mercury in dental amalgam (2008), 3.4 question 4, p.14

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