Poisonous Lead Dust a Result of Notre Dame Cathedral Fire
Paris has many old buildings with lead, yet does not have rules about lead dust in public spaces.
The issue has become an important concern after last spring's huge fire at Notre Dame Cathedral. The fire, in April, released thousands of kilograms of toxic lead dust into the atmosphere in just a few hours.
"When the Notre Dame fire happened, we didn't have any threshold for what represented dangerous lead levels outdoors," Anne Souyris told the Associated Press. She is the Paris City Hall deputy mayor in charge of public health. "It was a wake-up call...the amount of lead that was burned in Notre Dame was unprecedented."
Lead in Paris
The Associated Press (AP) news agency has found that many countries lack rules about lead in outdoor, public spaces. Other historic European capitals such as Rome and London do not have rules for outdoor lead dust levels. That is also the case for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the World Health Organization.
Poisoning from lead dust can cause permanent loss to mental ability, seizures, coma or death. Pregnant mothers and young children are at the greatest risk.
Concerns about lead are especially strong in Paris. Lead is common in many parts of Paris' 19th-century buildings — in roofs, balconies, floors and terraces. Experts say because Paris is a highly preserved historic city it also is a danger spot for lead.
"Paris is a beautifully preserved city," Souyris said. "But we realize we have also beautifully preserved its lead."
Neil M. Donahue is a chemistry professor at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. "Preservation does make Paris unusual," he said. "Incineration of one of the most famous roofs in the world may be especially dramatic, but there is no alchemy in this world. Lead will remain lead forever."
The fire also brought attention, among officials and the public, to the dangers of lead. In June, Paris' Regional Health Agency advised that all pregnant women and young children living near the site take a test for lead levels. The agency said 12 children in the surrounding areas tested positive for elevated lead levels in their blood since the fire. None had to be hospitalized or given medication.
One child's lead exposure came from a source other than the cathedral: the lead balcony of his family's apartment. It is unlikely the child would have been tested at all had it not been for the fire.
Despite the lead fallout from the fire, experts say tourists should not change their travel plans to one of the most visited cities in the world.
How to remove lead dust in Notre Dame?
However, poisonous lead dust remains a problem inside the fire-damaged cathedral.
Aline Magnien is director of the Historic Monuments Research Laboratory. She recently sent a team of scientists to Notre Dame. Their goal is to find out how to remove lead from inside the famous religious building without causing more damage.
"It's a race against the clock," she said. "The lead is a real problem. The cathedral is exceptionally precious. And we don't have the luxury of time."
I'm John Russell.
1.lead dust 铅尘
They can get it into their bodies by breathing or swallowing lead dust, or by eating soil or pieces of lead paint.
2.find out 发现
I hope we can find out about it.
3.other than 不同
Their motivation is other than me.
4.a team of 一组
Each specialist consultant has a team of doctors under him.
5.Doctors can test fluid from inside the cyst, but it is hard to tell which cysts will develop into cancer.
in charge of 负责
I asked one expert in charge of a clean-energy program.
One of the most important tasks I am in charge of is communicating with worldwide subsidiaries.
6.That means the cancer will still grow silently in most people until it is too late to save them.
at the greatest risk ...风险最大
Women who are postmenopausal are at the greatest risk for ovarian cancer.
Women were at the greatest risk if their mother"s intercristal distance was more than 30cm."
巴黎圣母院自春季突发大火后，这一问题成为人们关注的焦点 。今年4月的那场大火在短短数小时内就向大气中释放了数千公斤有毒铅尘 。
安妮·苏里斯（Anne Souyris）告诉美联社，“当圣母院突发火灾时，我们对室外危险的铅含量水平没有任何阈值” 。她是巴黎市政厅负责公共卫生的副市长 。“这是一个警钟……巴黎圣母院火灾释放的铅含量水平是前所未有的 。”
美联社发现，许多国家缺乏关于户外以及公共场所铅含量的规定 。罗马和伦敦等其他欧洲历史名城没有室外铅尘含量的规定 。美国环境保护署和世界卫生组织也不例外 。
铅中毒可导致永久性的智力丧失、癫痫、昏迷甚至死亡 。孕妇和幼儿面临的风险最大 。
在巴黎，对铅尘的担忧尤为严重 。铅在巴黎19世纪的许多建筑中都很常见，包括屋顶、阳台、地板和露台 。专家表示，由于巴黎是一座保存完好的历史名城，其也是一个危险的铅污染城市 。
“巴黎是一座保存完好的城市，”苏里斯说道 。“但我们意识到，铅也被完整地保存下来 。”
Neil M. Donahue是宾夕法尼亚州匹兹堡市卡耐基梅隆大学的化学教授 。“保存完好使巴黎与众不同，”他说 。“焚毁世界最著名的屋顶之一或许尤其引人注目，但这个世界上没有炼金术 。铅永远是铅 。”
这场火灾也引起了官员和公众对铅（中毒）危险的关注 。今年6月，巴黎地区卫生机构建议该地区附近的孕妇和儿童都要接受铅含量检测 。该机构表示，火灾发生后，周边地区的12名儿童血液铅含量检测呈阳性 。目前无人需要住院或接受药物治疗 。
其中一名儿童铅中毒场所不是巴黎圣母院，而是自家公寓的阳台 。如果不是因为这场火灾，这名儿童根本无需接受检查 。
艾琳·马尼恩（Aline Magnien）是历史遗迹研究实验室的主任 。她最近派了一队科学家前往巴黎圣母院 。他们的目标是找出如何在不造成更大破坏的情况下将铅尘从这座著名的宗教建筑内清理出去 。
“这是一场与时间的赛跑，”她说 。“铅尘确实是一个问题 。这座大教堂弥足珍贵 。我们的时间有限 。”