Monday, August 15, 2011

Using fishbones to clean up lead?

Wow. Many of you may know that lead poisoning is a big, big issue in Detroit. Lead is present in older homes (built before the 1972 ban on lead paint) and in soil (back from when gasoline was leaded, from historic lead smelters, demolished houses and other sources). Exposure to lead can impair neurological development in small children, making them more aggressive and less likely to perform well in school. We have some of the highest rates of elevated blood lead levels in the state.

There are different ways to deal with lead contamination - hauling away soil, special lead removal or abatement in homes. But it's expensive.

A recent article in the New York Times (July 2011) describes the method of mixing ground fish bones to neutralize the toxic lead (they combine to form a different compound that the body can't absorb).

It's pretty fascinating - almost half the cost of hauling soil. Read more about it here:
And responses to reader questions:

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