Contamination concern for kids in mining towns

CHILDREN from mining and smelting towns who experience high levels of exposure to lead, arsenic and cadmium have noticeably lower educational achievement than their peers, research shows.

In a study of children from Broken Hill, NSW, a team from Sydney’s Macquarie University found them to be 2.6 times more likely to have developmental disorders compared with the national average. Similar results were found for children in Mount Isa in Queensland and Port Pirie in South Australia.

Surface soil samples taken from 57 sites in six Broken Hill primary school catchments areas were analysed for metal levels.

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