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Exposure and preliminary health assessments of the Oujé-Bougoumou Cree population to mine tailings residues : report of the survey

Wed, 10/10/2012 - 13:47 -- admin
TitleExposure and preliminary health assessments of the Oujé-Bougoumou Cree population to mine tailings residues : report of the survey
Publication TypeResearch
Year of Publication2005
AuthorsDewailly E, Nieboer E
Keywordsenvironmental health
Abstract

The Cree community of Oujé-Bougoumou is located approximately 60 kilometres west of Chibougamau and comprises 622 residents. There was, for this community, a potential exposure to toxic substances derived from tailings residues left behind from mining operations in the mid 1950s. Confronted with this potential exposure, the Grand Council of the Crees commissioned an environmental contamination study, which was conducted by Christopher L. Covel from CL COVEL PG LLC and Roger D. Masters from Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire. This study indicated mobilization of toxic elements from mine tailings residues and suggested possible impacts on human health. The report produced by this study was subsequently critically reviewed by Evert Nieboer of McMaster University who endorsed the environmental conclusions, but not the interpretation of the data on contaminants in hair on which the human health risk judgement had been based. A 2001 survey by the Quebec Ministry of the Environment confirmed the presence of toxic elements in sediments near mine tailings sites. Subsequently, the Oujé-Bougoumou Council accepted E. Nieboer’s recommendations that an environmental risk assessment and a human health study be initiated. To address the Oujé-Bougoumou community’s needs, the ministry of Health and Social Services mandated the Quebec National Institute of Public Health to conduct a study in order to characterize the possible exposure of the Cree community of Oujé-Bougoumou to environmental toxic elements. This report presents the data of the project conducted during the autumn of 2002 in the Cree communities of Oujé-Bougoumou and Nemaska.

URLhttp://www.santecom.qc.ca/Archimages/189.PDF
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