The 1998 mercury legislation created an eight-member advisory committee on mercury pollution to advise the general assembly, the executive branch, and the general public on matters relating to the prevention and cleanup of mercury pollution and the latest science on remediation of mercury pollution. Legislation passed in 2005 added three members to the committee and terminated the committee as of January 1, 2010.
By January 15th of each year through 2011, the advisory committee reported to the general assembly regarding:
- The extent of mercury contamination in the soil, waters and air of Vermont.
- The extent of any health risk from mercury contamination in Vermont, especially to pregnant women, children, the Abenaki Self-Help Association, Inc. and other communities that use fish as a major source of food.
- Methods available for minimizing risk of further contamination or increased health risk to the Vermont public.
- Potential costs of minimizing further risk and recommendations of how to raise the funds necessay to reduce contamination and minimize risk of mercury-related health problems in Vermont.
- The effectiveness of the established programs, including manufacturer-based reverse distribution systems for in-state collection, subsequent transportation and subsequent recycling of mercury from waste mercury-added products and recommendations for altering the programs to make them more effective.
- Coordination needed with other states to effectively address mercury issues.
- Ways to reduce the extent to which solid waste produced within the state is incinerated at incinerators, regardless of location, that fail to use the best available technology in scrubbing and filtering emissions from the incinerator stack.