LEAD Action News
LEAD Action News Volume 16 Number 3, june 2016, ISSN 1324-6011
Incorporating Lead Aware Times ( ISSN 1440-4966) and Lead Advisory Service News (ISSN 1440-0561)
The Journal of The LEAD (Lead Education and Abatement Design) Group Inc.
Editor-in-Chief: Elizabeth O’Brien, Editorial Team: Yiru Rocky Huang, Michelle Calvert and David Ratcliffe

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LANv16n3 Editorial

The good news is that Volcano Art Prize is open to entries for another 12 weeks, until 25th July 2016. Please help make this our biggest competition ever! Your donations can bump up the cash prizes too, but Pictureproducts has kindly donated 30 mugs (printed) again so there are 32 prizes up for grabs.

The best news I’ve heard in a long time is that three of the final 6 leaded petrol countries have apparently gone unleaded as at the end of January 2016. That means, leaded gasoline is still sold in Algeria, Iraq and Yemen because a US company needs the profits! We’ve put together a list of some of the top shareholders of Innospec Inc (who make the lead additive for petrol), so that you know which funds and investors to avoid because they hold shares in a company that makes a profit out of a product that keeps 100 million people still exposed (totally preventably) to lead from motor vehicle emissions.

More good news: the world’s second largest paint company agreed to phase out lead from all paints by 2020. The media release comes from a hero of The LEAD Group’s Technical Advisory Board, Perry Gottesfeld who played a vital role in the decision. And thanks to Linda Parker and Susan Smith from the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette for their kind permission to reprint the Post-Gazette’s article about the company, PPG.

In the article What does WHO and ANZFS say about lead in food? I trust the reader will see that while the World Health Organisation has said six years ago (in 2010) that there is no level of lead in food that can be regarded as health protective, Australian and New Zealand Food Standards has recently (March 2016) published “revised” metal residue limits for foods - but the maximum amounts for lead in food are unchanged, (except that there is a new limit of 2 milligrams per kilogram (mg/kg) for lead in salt).

Shouldn’t the maximum residue limits for lead (and other metals) in Australian foods be revised downwards now that WHO and Australia’s National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) have recognised that blood lead levels should be reduced to as low as reasonably achievable, and certainly below the new (NHMRC, May 2015) reference blood lead level of 5 micrograms per decilitre (µg/dL)?

LEAD Action News readers will be delighted to hear that the NHMRC has finally published the long-awaited Managing Individual Exposure to Lead in Australia - A Guide for Health Practitioners. From memory, there’s been talk of publishing this Lead Guide for doctors, etc since 2012! I haven’t even had a chance to glance at it yet so I’d be very interested in reader-feedback (letters to the editor) on the NHMRC Lead Guide for case managers, for publication in the next issue of LEAD Action News.

President of The LEAD Group, Professor Mark Taylor has co-authored some new publications too, but again I haven’t had time to read them so let me know what you think:

Tracing changes in atmospheric sources of lead contamination using lead isotopic compositions in Australian red wine, at: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0045653516303319  and

Unravelling a ‘miner’s myth’ that environmental contamination in mining towns is naturally occurring, at http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26919836

Michael Galvin from Tasmania has sent in Part 2 of his article of which Part 1 was published in LEAD Action News vol 16 no 2. Other heavy metal contamination news from Tasmania has been reprinted here from the Tasmanian Times in full with the comments – with acknowledgement of Lindsay Tuffin, Editor.

Thanks kindly to Heath Harrison, Editor, Newcastle Herald, for permission to reprint the Paul Maguire article Chickens lickin’ lead poisoning and Peter Lewis’ Lead Battery Hens (hilarious and seriously good) cartoon. I’ve requested a copy of the Boolaroo Egg Lead study mentioned in The Herald (1994) article from Dr Craig Dalton, Director, Population Health, Hunter New England Local Health District, so hopefully we’ll be able to publish the link to it or the full study in the next issue of LEAD Action News.

Thanks to our wonderful volunteer translator Orlando Aguirre-Lopez, we have the Spanish version of the Tom Neltner article published in the last issue of LEAD Action News: Household Action Level for Lead in Drinking Water.

There’s an occupational health submission by Andrew Hobday which is old but we’re web-publishing it as it’s been taken down from the federal government website; and there’s a 2016 occupational lead exposure submission from The LEAD Group to finish.

Finally, I’d like to congratulate our volunteer Data-Analyst Namita Patnaik, on the recent birth of her daughter, and to ask all our readers if they can put their hand up to do the important work that Namita was doing – collating comments I’ve written about lab lead test results obtained through LEAD Group Kits, as well as to ask if anyone could volunteer their talents at database and website design and building, so we can get the Lead Test Kit Results website up and running – fully automated and with a much quicker turnaround on results and reports – ASAP!

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