Mercury: Minnesota Dept. of Health


Mercury is: element that naturally occurs in the environment, is found in some products, and is a potential health risk for people.

  • In its pure form, elemental mercury is a shiny, silver-white, odorless liquid. Mercury is a useful chemical in many products. People can come into contact with mercury when using or disposing of products containing mercury.
  • Methylmercury is an organic mercury compound that accumulates in large predatory fish. It is produced by bacteria from other forms of mercury in rivers, lakes and oceans, and can build up in some of the fish we eat. For information about how to choose fish to eat that are low in mercury, see the Safe Eating Guidelines.
  • While mercury can come in many chemical forms, it cannot be created or destroyed because it is an element. To keep it out of the air and water, it is important to take mercury-containing products to hazardous waste facilities for disposal.

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Updated Tuesday, April 03, 2018 at 08:19AM