High lead levels pose an increased risk to children
The department of health and social services does not consider the high levels of lead and cadmium revealed by the GN recent soil sampling study at Nanisivik to be safe.
We are concerned that these elevated levels may pose a risk to the health of children in particular. The extent of this risk needs to be evaluated further as possible future uses of the site are considered.
We know that there are elevated metal levels in the soil. But we do not have any information confirming the sources of this material, human exposure levels or blood lead levels in the general population from Nanisivik, since monitoring was only done on mine workers.
Further studies are being done to complete a risk assessment on human health. The results of this year’s studies, if carried out correctly, will determine whether the lead levels in Nanisivik could give rise to adverse health effects, or can be mitigated to a level consistent with human health.
Dr. Geraldine Osborne.
Medical Officer of Health
Department of Health and Social Services