Despite the average concentration of lead in the American bloodstream dropping since the late 70s, the levels are still higher than natural human levels. Moreover, recent health studies elucidate that exposure levels previously deemed “safe” were too high. Excessive lead exposure correlates with many ills, including impaired cognition, ADD, lower academic performance, psychiatric disorders, increased blood pressure, hypertension and arrhythmia. Lead is also believed to play a role in dementia in the elderly especially since as we age, our bones release lead that has accumulated within us over time. Lead exposure also has financial consequences as well due to its direct and indirect causes to medical costs, special education, and dealing with violent crime. It is also prevalent in the environment because it does not degrade and the weather can re-suspend particles in the atmosphere, soils can absorb it to contaminate crops, is in old house paint, is in aviation gas, is in water, etc.
The information provided about what lead can do to one’s body and how prevalent it is in the environment is worrisome, but there are steps to be taken to reduce lead levels. Emission laws can be pushed more aggressively in political agendas. Lead paint can be banned of use and sale. A high levy could be imposed on lead products. These are just some ideas the article suggests that I believe are feasible. It is already in the environment, we cannot just eradicate it, but we can reduce the amount emitted and keep ourselves less exposed to it.