Where does lead come from?
There are four main sources of lead in Cleveland.
Until 1978, lead was used in residential house paint to make the paint more durable. When leaded paint deteriorates, particles of lead are released as dust into homes. Babies can inhale or ingest lead dust inside a poorly maintained home. Lead dust can be tracked in from outdoors.
TetraEthylLead was used in gasoline sold in the US from the 1950's to the 1980's. Since lead does not burn, particles of lead were released in car exhausts and landed on soil adjacent to roads and highways.
Since Roman times, lead was used in the pipes that carry water to your home and in plumbing fixtures. Even if your home has copper plumbing, the solder use to join copper pipes contains lead. Lead molecules can dissolve in the water running through lead plumbing and fixtures. Many water companies treat household water with orthophosphate to reduce the likelihood of lead getting into drinking water. Home water filters can help. PS: because lead is sweet, Romans added lead acetate to wine for a cocktail. Any surprise that the Roman Empire fell?
Industrial wastes are sometimes full of lead. Lead acid batteries used in automobiles. Bullets and other munitions use lead. Smokestack lead emissions can affect whole communities. Industrial wastes can end up in the air, on the ground or in the water.
What are other lead sources ?
Lead shot and fish sinkers are made of lead. When game animals or fish are consumed that can contain lead fragments. Example: Loon Conservation Center entices anglers to get the lead out.
Paint used in roads and bridges contains lead which when deteriorated or scrapped can release lead into the environment. Example: Primark recalls popular Disney product over fears it could be harmful to kids
Aviation gasoline (AVGAS) used in piston aircraft contain lead which, when burned, falls to earth, especially around smaller airports where corporate or recreational aircraft land and take off.
Lead is often used in paints and glazes applied to pottery, child toys and housewares outside the US or built by hobbyists. Example: 15 Cases of Lead Poisoning Linked to Use of Ceramic Ware, NYC Health Department Warns. What to Know:
August 31, 2023. NBC News. Marijuana users found to have lead and another heavy metal in their blood and urine. "Some marijuana users may have elevated levels of lead and cadmium — two heavy metals linked to long-term health issues — in their blood and urine, a new study shows. Among a group of more than 7,200 adults, the 358 who reported using marijuana within the past 30 days were found to have 27% higher blood lead levels than those who said they didn’t use either marijuana or tobacco." Here's the study.
Can adults can get lead poisoning?
1. Adults can only get lead poisoning from work or hobby sources. Examples of adult exposure include rehabbing old buildings, recycling batteries, reloading or cleaning shooting ranges, making fishing lures, and working with some ceramic glazes. Adult bodies do not absorb lead as efficiently as children and their nervous systems are no longer in a developmental phase.
2. However, no one knows the impact of adult exposure to lead from smoking Marijuana. (see above)
3. Adults who were exposed WHEN THEY WERE CHILDREN are more likely to have secondary conditions like heart and kidney disease (see below) and...
4. The stress of pregnancy can draw lead stored in the bones into the blood streams of women who were poisoned as children. That lead can cross the placenta and impact the fetus. Good nutrition during pregnancy can reduce or prevent this transfer to lead from the bones to the blood.
AC asks: Who is responsible for testing lead in based on income apartments?
CLASH suggests that tenants in rental housing built before 1978 should report chipping, peeling or deteriorating paint or bare soil to the Cleveland Department of Building and Housing. You can request a copy of CLASH's Brochure "Take Action" by sending an email to email@example.com or leave a voice or text message at 216-359-1060.
What are the effects of childhood exposure to lead on adults?
Kidney disease: July 16, 2021. U.S. News & World Report. Even a Little Lead in Drinking Water Can Harm People With Kidney Disease. "Low levels of lead in drinking water are widespread in the United States. These findings suggest that U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) rules on allowable lead levels in drinking water pose a risk to the 30 million to 40 million Americans with kidney disease. 'While drinking water may seem uniformly healthy, low levels of lead contamination found in the majority of drinking water systems in the United States may have toxic effects for those with chronic kidney disease,' said lead author Dr. John Danziger, of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston."
Personality: Jul 12, 2021. UT News. Childhood Lead Exposure May Adversely Affect Adult Personalities, "AUSTIN, Texas — Lead exposure in childhood may lead to less mature and less healthy personalities in adulthood, according to a new study led by psychology researchers at The University of Texas at Austin. The study, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, sampled more than 1.5 million people in 269 U.S. counties and 37 European nations. Researchers found that those who grew up in areas with higher levels of atmospheric lead had less adaptive personalities in adulthood — lower levels of conscientiousness and agreeableness and higher levels of neuroticism."
Can plants remove lead in soil?
For years scientists have identified various plants that can absorb lead from soil (bioremediation), but so far there's no practical plan to use bio-remediation on a large scale. The big barrier is: what do you do with the pant residues after the lead has been absorbed. Incineration or composting just puts the lead back into the environment.
Treating lead contaminated soil with chemicals is another approach to reclaiming lead poisoned soils. One possible approach involves the use of superphosphate, a fertilizer, which binds with lead in soil to make the lead insoluble, ie. unable to be absorbed by living things. Interestingly, orthophosphate is commonly used to bind lead in water systems.
Keep in mind that phosphate run off is a major contributor to harmful algae blooms in Lake Erie. Control your run off!