Contaminated Soil: Lead Poisoning Going Beyond the Water Supply
A study from Michigan State University has found that during the drier months of the year, children in Flint are showing higher lead levels in their blood, even before the switch to new water supply due to contaminated soils.
They are saying that it is being related to lead contaminated soil especially in older, more industrial areas of the city. The research is published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health.
Rick Sadler, a public health expert in Michigan said, “We have known for a long time that soil lead is an issue, It’s not worse in Flint than in any other older, industrial city. But when you combine the exposure from soil with Flint’s water problem, you see a magnification of the effects.”
Study shows since 2010 the levels of lead in children’s blood were consistently higher during the months of July, August and September specifically in kids living within the city.
The levels rose 50 percent higher in 2014 and 2015 due to the water being switched in 2014.
The research shows that during these dry months the dust from the contaminated soils is found in the air around the urban or industrialized areas.
Sadler goes on the say, “It’s going to take a lot longer than the five years some political leaders have promised to remove all the sources of lead in the environment. We could be looking at more like 20 to 25 years. And it’s important that our government leaders don’t turn a blind eye and forget about these other environmental issues once the water situation has been cleared up.”
Flint, MI isn’t the only city that effected by the contaminated soils in their area. A lot of old industrial cities are a big spot for contaminated soil. It is an issue that often gets over looked but is just as important to fix as water supplies. As Sadler was saying in the article, the task of removing all lead in the next five years is a long shot. Its not only the water supply that is effected by this metal. It’s going to be a big project to continue to fix these problems but it’s something that we cannot loss sight of.
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