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The North Carolina General Assembly passed the Clean Smokestacks Act almost four years ago to clean up soot and smog-forming pollution from coal-fired power plants. While the act requires power plants to reduce nitrogen oxide emissions from 245,000 tons in 1998 to 56,000 tons by 2009, it does not say what to do about mercury pollution from those plants. Most of the mercury pollution from these plants falls into nearby water bodies, where, in North Carolina, it is quickly converted to its most toxic form. Suttles discusses what needs to be done to reduce this form of pollution which makes some state fish inedible and threatens developing brains and central nervous systems of young children.