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The world's most toxic town: the terrible legacy of Zambia's lead mines

May 28, 2017
The world's most toxic town: the terrible legacy of Zambia's lead mines

This piece in The Guardian this week, quoting our own Dr. Jack Caravanos.  The photos are exquisite and frightening.

Each time Jack travels to Kabwe, he is shocked by the extent of the lead contamination and the degree of human suffering.  Sadly, positive lead in soil results and even levels in the hundreds and thousands of parts per million don’t surprise him anymore. What does continue to shock him, is the extent of contamination, which in the city center is pervasive. Yet looking at the soil reveals nothing - no strange odors emanating outwards, no odd colors in the soil, and no unusual textures. It’s just dried dirt completely indistinguishable from any urban soil or country dirt road. Except of course, this soil has lethal molecules of one most dangerous childhood chronic poisons. 

On this last visit, Jack was able to share his knowledge and experience with a well-known and seasoned environmental reporter from The Guardian, Damian Carrington, who was assisted by the photographer, Larry C. Price, in revealing the extent of human suffering. In short, these trips have transformed Jack and solidified his personal goal of improving the health and opportunities of the children of Kabwe and putting an end to global lead poisoning. We’re all quite proud of Jack being in the CGPH and looking forward to carrying the NYU banner in all his global projects.