Download Arsenic pollution: a global synthesis by Peter Ravenscroft PDF

By Peter Ravenscroft

Arsenic toxins summarizes the most up-tp-date examine at the distribution and reasons of arsenic pollutants, its impression on future health and agriculture, and options when it comes to water offer, therapy, and water source administration.

  • Provides the 1st international and interdisciplinary account of arsenic toxins occurrences
  • Integrates geochemistry, hydrology, agriculture, and water offer and remedy for the 1st time
  • Options are highlighted for constructing replacement water resources and strategies for arsenic trying out and elimination
  • Appeals to experts in a single self-discipline looking an outline of the paintings being performed in different disciplines

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Extra info for Arsenic pollution: a global synthesis

Sample text

The first major case of endemic disease caused by arsenic in drinking water was reported in the 1920s in Cordoba Province of Argentina (Bado, 1939), where it is associated with a type of skin cancer known as Bel Ville disease. Although this affected thousands, perhaps tens of thousands, of people, it was little known outside Argentina until the end of the 20th century. 2 The mid-twentieth century From the 1930s to the 1970s, there were few discoveries of natural arsenic contamination, although minor occurrences were noted in Canada (Wyllie, 1937) and New Zealand (Grimmett and McIntosh, 1939).

Sometimes known as the King of Poisons, arsenic has been known to humankind for thousands of years, being used to harden bronze in the Middle East around 3000 BC, and prized as a dye by the Egyptians, Greeks and Romans. In the fifth century BC, Hippocrates suggested using arsenic compounds as an ulcer treatment, while in the first and second centuries AD, the Roman Emperor Nero and Mithridates, King of Pontus, both used arsenic to murder their enemies. However, we will not describe the human use and abuse of arsenic further, because that is not the purpose of this book.

There is very little information from the ocean basins, although arsenic has been reported from geothermal sources on Hawaii and Iceland. 5 Risk, Perception and Social Impacts The promotion of shallow tubewells to reduce the incidence of enteric disease had the unintended consequence of creating a new risk of mass chronic poisoning. This is an example of the self-generated risks with unmanageable outcomes that characterise Ulrich Beck’s ‘risk society’ (Beck, 1992). In the risk society, the social production of risk involves hazards that are produced by society itself, and that undermine the established safety systems of the state’s existing risk assessments (Beck, 1996).

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