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Monday, March 28, 2011

More on Soil

An Associated Press article about urban soils ran in over 100 news outlets a couple of days ago with many headlines using the word "tainted".  Most of the articles made the case that the benefits of community gardening and urban agriculture outweighed the risks associated with "tainted" soils. Gardeners were encouraged to have their soil tested.
The articles can be found in:
Huffington Post
Battle Creek Enquirer

The director of the Cornell Waste Management Institute was quoted saying that a pilot study of 44 gardens found less than 10% of the gardens had high levels of Lead. This seems to contradict the finding of the Brooklyn College Environmental Science Analytical Center that 51% of the urban soil samples tested at the lab exceeded  the New York State Dept. of Environmental Conservation's Soil Cleanup Objectives  restricted use levels. But what this does is point out the lack of consistent standards for what are acceptable levels of heavy metals. 

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