Toxic Land Is Not Land Back : Proper Remediation Must Be Performed First

Just to be clear: eating food grown in contaminated soil may not result in contaminated food…

Even though petrochemical aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) are largely unstudied “likely” carcinogens–some of which have been found to move through the soil easily into water; and that contamination can move from soil to food to animals.

Petrochemical Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAH) include chemicals like Benzene, Naphthalene, Xylene, and other chemicals which are part of a complex and ever-changing family of petroleum-derived products.

While we know that lead, mercury, arsenic, and other heavy metals can concentrate in root vegetables, causing various ailments. The effects of PAH have not be sufficiently researched or linked to the varying illnesses of those living in and around former brownfields and industrial complexes, or exposed to contaminated soils.

While everyone is so excited to line up for their #landback/#rematriatetheland photo ops, ask yourselves if this is the land that you actually want back.

Proper remediation, decontamination, and detoxification of these places must be done by the city/government and/or corporations “giving” this land back.

It helps no one to turn a blind eye to the real-world challenges behind soil and water contamination.

Exposing us to contaminated soil through dust, accidental ingestion, or to the detritus which accumulates on vegetables and fruit above the ground, is not healing. It’s a slow death.

Furthermore, a substance doesn’t just have to be “carcinogenic” to cause harm. Some mutagenic substances can be carried down through generations.

Part of a proper #landacknowledgement not only mentions the @MuwekmaOhloneTribe; it admits to the harms western society committed against the environment during colonization and industrialization.