Newly-released research from U.S. government scientists found a chemical in birth control pills and the chemical BPA affects the fertility of fish. These chemicals often end up in waterways.
In a study published in the journal Scientific Reports, U.S. Geological Survey researchers found that fish exposed to 17a- ethinylestradiol, also known as EE2, produced offspring that struggled to fertilized eggs, The Washington Post reported. The hormone’s effects in fertility were also found in the grandchildren of the fish originally exposed.
EE2 is a major ingredient in oral contraceptives, and up to 68 percent of each dose is released in urine and excrement.
Researchers also determined that BPA, which is widely used in plastics, had a similar effect in reducing fertility in fish used for the research. Both EF2 and BPA are endocrine disruptors that interfere with hormones and cause developmental disorders.