Human Health Effects Research Program
Given the implications of the association between pollutants in the Great Lakes and the potential for adverse human health outcomes, the U.S. Congress amended the Great Lakes Critical Programs Act in 1990 to investigate this human health concern. This amendment, in Section 106, Subsection 118(e), mandates that "the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), in consultation with the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) and the Great Lakes States, shall submit to the U.S. Congress a research report assessing the adverse effects of water pollutants in the Great Lakes system on the health of persons in the Great Lakes states." In 1992, the U.S. Congress authorized funds for research in support of this report. To date, ATSDR has received approximately $22 million to support human health effects studies in the Great Lakes basin.