Oil extraction in the Amazon basin and exposure to metals in indigenous populations

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Abstract

Most oil extraction areas in the Peruvian Amazon are within indigenous territories. Poor environmental practices have exposed the indigenous population to metals. We conducted a survey in two indigenous Kukama communities to assess body burdens of metals after the occurrence of two major oil spills in 2014. Urine levels above those recommended by the Peruvian Ministry of Health were observed in 50% and 17% of the study population for mercury and cadmium, respectively.

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