Health risk assessment of lead for children in tinfoil manufacturing and e-waste recycling areas of Zhejiang Province, China

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Wang, Xiaofeng
Miller, Greg
Ding, Gangqiang
Lou, Xiaoming
Cai, Delei
Chen, Zhijian
Meng, Jia
Tang, Jun
Chu, Cordia
Mo, Zhe
Han, Jianlong
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2012
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Abstract

Tinfoil manufacturing and electronic waste (e-waste) recycling remain rudimentary processes in Zhejing Province, China, which could account for elevated blood lead levels (BLLs) and health impacts on children. We assessed the potential health risks of lead in tinfoil manufacturing and e-waste recycling areas. 329 children in total aged 11-12 who lived in a tinfoil manufacturing area (Lanxi), an e-waste recycling area (Luqiao) and a reference area (Chun'an) were studied. Lead levels in children's blood were determined by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometer (ICP-MS). Blood urea nitrogen (BUN), serum creatinine, serum calcium, d-Aminolaevulinic acid (d-ALA) and intelligence quotient (IQ) were also measured. Geometric mean of BLLs in Lanxi, Luqiao and Chun'an were 8.11 姯dL, 6.97 姯dL, and 2.78 姯dL respectively, with 35.1%, 38.9% and 0% of children who had BLLs above 10 姯dL. The BLLs in exposed areas were much higher than those in the control area. Lanxi children had higher creatinine and calcium than Chun'an children, and Luqiao children had higher d-ALA and lower calcium than Chun'an children. No significant differences of IQ were observed between Lanxi, Luqiao and Chun'an, however a negative relationship between BLLs and IQ was shown for the study children. The results indicated that lead pollution from e-waste recycling and tinfoil processing appears to be a potential serious threat to children's health.

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Science of the Total Environment

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426

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