The city of Mitrovica, in northern Kosovo, has historically been a heavily contaminated city due to its lead mining industry. The long history of heavy metal mining and processing, combined with the violent break-up of Former Yugoslavia, has created a slew of human health, environmental, and social impacts. High levels of lead exposure in the minority communities (Roma, Ashkali, Egyptian) of Mitrovica has arisen as one of the greatest health issues in the area. There have been a number of studies conducted by governmental and non-governmental organizations, many international, to assess the severity of the issue. There have also been projects, including relocation and blood sample analysis, conducted with the objectives of reducing dangerous levels of lead exposure and increasing public knowledge of the risks associated with lead exposure. Although great progress has been made in addressing this issue, not all at-risk communities in the area have been visited and trained in strategies to minimize their risk of lead exposure. The 2-Korriku neighborhood is a known at-risk population that is directly adjacent to the Industrial Park, one of the main sources of lead contamination, and downwind of the lead tailings and slag heaps. This particular community is of mixed ethnicities (Ashkali and Albanian) and had not yet been visited by trained officials before this project. In order to determine the community's lead exposure risk, household lead dust samples were taken and semi-structured surveys with open-ended questions were conducted in 57 households in the community. Twelve of the sampled households exceeded the hazard standards for lead dust on floors and/or windowsills, while thirty-five were identified as having "red flags" for increased risk of lead exposure. 91% of respondents showed a willingness to participate in an educational program and 98% would be use better cleaning supplies if they were available. Suggestions for removing high household lead concentrations, along with strategies to minimize lead exposure both inside and outside of the household, are provided. The study was done with the goal of providing a starting point for future research projects to be done by students from the Rochester Institute of Technology and the American University in Kosovo. Therefore, suggestions for continuing on with this study were also provided.
Library of Congress Subject Headings
Scott, Maxwell, "First steps towards minimizing lead exposure in an at-risk community in Mitrovica, Kosovo" (2013). Thesis. Rochester Institute of Technology. Accessed from
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