Guadalajara, México. A new study on lead in architectural decorative paints sold for home use in México released today by Casa Cem and IPEN finds that more than one-fourth of the paints analyzed contained dangerously high total lead content greater than 10,000 parts per million (ppm). The maximum permissible limit on lead in paint in e.g. USA and Canada is 90 ppm—the same threshold recommended by the UN Environment Programme. One yellow paint from the brand, General Paint, contained the highest amount of lead at 200,000 ppm. Moreover, a yellow paint from the brand, Pinturas y Matices, labeled as “lead-free” contained 130,000 ppm lead.
“Exposure to lead even at low levels has irreversible and lifelong impacts to children, especially those aged six years and below—the critical age for brain development,” said Sofia Chávez, General Director of Casa Cem. “We must eliminate this perilous source of lead exposure to young children to protect their intellectual growth and maximize our nation’s future intellectual capacity. This can be done now since safe and effective alternatives to lead are already in use and generally available in México.”
Baghdad, Iraq. The first study on lead content in Iraqi paints for home use was released today by Together to Protect Human & the Environment Association (Together) and IPEN, with facilitation of the Ministry of Health & Environment. It reveals that more than 70 percent of the analyzed paint brands sold one or more paint that contained total lead concentrations exceeding 90 parts per million (ppm)—the maximum allowed limit in e.g., the United States, India and Kenya, and also the limit recommended by the UN Environment Programme for all paint. Furthermore, a yellow Al-Marjan Gloss Enamel Paint contained the highest amount of lead at 110,000 ppm.
“The exposure to lead, even at low levels, affects a child’s brain development leading to lasting effects throughout life such as lower IQ, poorer performance in school, and impulsive and violent behavior,” said Saadia Hassoon, Chairman, Together. “Such effects impacts work performance in the long term, so there is no better time to act but now. Otherwise, we will imperil our children’s intellectual growth and consequently reduce Iraq’s future intellectual capacity and economic success even though safe and effective alternatives are already in use and widely available. It is therefore important to eliminate this dangerous source of lead exposure to young children.”
Global Lead Week of Action Calls for Ban on Lead Paint
(Göteborg, Sweden) Environmental health scientists, child health advocates, governments, and paint industry associations are uniting this week (October 21-27, 2018) for the International Lead Poisoning Prevention Week of Action. Calling for protections for the 857 million children ages 0-9 years old who live in countries with no protective lead paint regulations, organizations in 30 countries, coordinating with the Global Alliance to Eliminate Lead Paint (a voluntary partnership hosted by UN Environment Programme and the World Health Organization), urge governments to adopt legislation to protect children’s health.