Arsenic concentrations 26 times higher than WHO health standards

COPAE  2010-10-15 22:48

An article written by Johan Van de Wauw of the Ghent University shows that the levels of arsenic are rising sharply in the groundwater of San Miguel Ixtahuacán, where Montana Exploradora (subsidiary of Goldcorp) exploits its Marlin mine.

By Allan Lissner

An analysis of the surveys of Montana itself demonstrates that arsenic concentrations in the groundwater that is pumped by the mine, has risen sharply since the start of the operations. On the other hand, arsenic was also found in some of the groundwater sources around the mine in levels far above the WHO health standard. These levels are alarmingly high, especially in an area where groundwater is used for drinking water. The findings of elevated arsenic concentrations in urine of people around the mine and an increase in reports of arsenic-related diseases makes this concern even bigger. It is known that arsenic in drinking water at certain concentrations causes bladder, lung and skin cancer and may also cause liver and kidney cancer. Furthermore, arsenic is also known to harm the central and peripheral nervous systems as well as heart and blood vessels. All this shows that a broader and independent research is necessary prior to further groundwater extraction.

Click here to read the article


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