Chris Dunagan at the Kitsap Sun gave a nice perspective on how clean water and the fish consumption rate are impacting people:
People who consume significant quantities of contaminated shellfish from Port Gamble Bay face a higher risk of getting cancer than people who eat foods without cancer-causing chemicals, according to a new health assessment.
Out of every 1,000 people who eat 1.1 pounds of clams, oysters and crabs every day over a lifetime, two people could be expected to get cancer because of those shellfish, according to the analysis, which focuses on shellfish taken from the upper portion of Port Gamble Bay.
The issue of cancer risk from seafood is complicated and difficult to explain, said Paul McCollum, natural resources director for the Port Gamble S’Klallam Tribe. But tribal members have a right to be told about the risks of eating shellfish from their traditional areas.
“For tribal folks, it is a built-in part of their life,” McCollum said. “They need something to eat, and there really should not be an increased cancer risk. But we know in this day and age that there is a pretty significant risk of cancer for everybody.”