Mount Isa came into existence because of the vast mineral deposits found in the area. Mount Isa Mines (MIM) is one of the most productive single mines in world history, based on combined production of lead, silver, copper and zinc.
With an estimated population of 22,013 as at June 2014. Mount Isa is the administrative, commercial and industrial centre for the state’s vast north-western region.
Lead is present in Mount Isa, it is a naturally occurring metal found in the soil and it is mined and smelted here. Australia is one of the world’s major lead-producing countries.
The amount of lead in our homes and everyday surroundings has decreased substantially over recent years. Since 2002 lead has not been added to petrol in Australia. The amount of lead in house paints was limited to 0.1% in 1997. Regulations restrict or prevent the use of lead in consumer goods including: toys, cosmetics, ceramics and medicines, and the importation of products that contain lead.
Lead remains in dust and soil for many years unless it is deliberately removed. In some residential areas, soils still contain lead deposited from traffic fumes over many years. Dust inside and outside some buildings still contains lead from old paint or from traffic fumes. When old houses and buildings are renovated and lead paint is stripped or sanded, people living or working inside and nearby can be exposed to lead.
The human body has no use for lead, there is no safe level of lead that has been proven not to cause any health problems.
People can absorb lead into their bodies by breathing air that contains very fine particles of lead or by swallowing dust, soil, water or food that is contaminated with lead. Unlike some other naturally found metals, lead and lead compounds are not beneficial or necessary for human health, and can be harmful to the human body when swallowed or inhaled.
The Lead Alliance has been developed to deliver information to the Mount Isa community on how to live safely within an environment containing lead and other contaminates.
Living in a lead environment is manageable, by following simple hygiene guides and steps encouraged by The Lead Alliance and recommended by the National Health & Medical Research Council.
Detailed information on the health effects can be found here on our website in the Risks & Prevention section.
For further information FREE CALL The Lead Alliance on 1800 457 547