WHAT IS THE NORTHPORT PROJECT?
A non-profit advocacy group created to protect, inform, and provide a voice for the residents of Northport Washington, suffering health issues linked to decades of exposure to Teck Smelter’s pollution.
The Northport Project provides the community of Northport with information and updates from the on-going EPA/Teck investigations, studies, and human health risk assessment. Our main goal is to attract attention to the many similar health issues residents of Northport have been plagued with for three generations.
Small communities are finally getting a chance to be heard. In 2009, with the assistance of Northport residents, and the Citizens for a Clean Columbia (CCC), The Northport Project conducted a community health survey. Of the over 500 survey’s completed, from past and present residents, several health clusters were observed. These illnesses included; Thyroid diseases (116), Arthritis (127), specific Cancers (65), Brain Aneurisms/Tumors (23), Pulmonary Embolisms (8), Parkinson’s/Multiple Scoliosis (13), and Ulcerative Colitis/Crohn’s Disease (54).
A non- infectious health cluster is the occurrence of a greater-than-expected number of health issues found in a populated area. These clusters are utilized by scientists to investigate possible environmental links that cause or trigger the illnesses (also known as an epidemiological study). All of the health issues reported by the residents have been linked to chronic exposure to the multiple toxins, (specifically arsenic and cadmium), which the Northport community has been exposed to from the pollutants released by Teck, a lead and zinc smelter located in Trail, B.C., for over a century.
The results of our community health survey caught the attention of a Doctor at Massachusetts General Hospital -Crohn’s and Colitis Center. In 2011 they completed their own study of cases of Colitis and Crohn’s diagnosed in Northport residents. They confirmed the number of cases to be 11.5 to 15 times higher than the national standards. Based on this they will be conducting an upcoming additional study utilizing bio monitoring and the historical environmental data collected from the EPA.
The Northport Project is currently reaching out to other Universities and Research Hospital’s in the hopes of getting additional studies done on the other health clusters reported, such as MS and Parkinson’s.
Most importantly, we hope to find the funding to offer FREE annual health screenings and hair element and blood testing to the community. Due to the many health issues linked to chronic exposure to the toxins found above safety levels in Northport’s air, water, and soil, the free annual health screenings and testing would monitor resident’s accumulation of these heavy metal toxins.
There is little known on the specific health issues linked to chronic exposure to multiple heavy metal toxins, through multiple routes of exposure. By monitoring the resident’s health annually hopefully the health issues can be diagnosed at an early (and treatable) stage. Early detection not only saves lives, but the data that would be gained regarding the health issues diagnosed and the accumulation, or body burden, of toxins that triggered it, would be invaluable data toxicologists are currently lacking.
This information is critical not only in finding the correlation between the accumulation of specific toxins in the body and the resulting health issues, but also could be used in a long-term epidemiological study that would provide accurate safety standards for chronic exposure to specific heavy metal toxins. Each resident’s confidential health history could save thousands of lives – not only now, but for future generations ahead.
THE FUTURE OF NORTHPORT
Northport is one of the most beautiful areas in the world. Our family never plans to leave the area. We also want to see Northport grow through tourism and local businesses.
The Northport Project does not want to scare people away from visiting, moving, or living in the Northport area. We want to make it clear that visitors are in no danger of enjoying the many recreational activities our area has to offer; several studies have proven that annual recreational exposure to the area does not pose any health risks at all.
However, The Northport Project also wants to make sure the future and current residents, who are exposed to the toxins 365 days of the year, are protected so they can continue living in the town they love so much.
THE NORTHPORT PROJECT
The Northport Project aims to provide opportunities that educate, empower and protect Northport residents.
We plan to do this by helping to coordinate studies through highly accredited research institutions, hospitals, and universities. Also, by applying for grants and attracting donators to fund the annual community health screenings.
Pleasevisit our blog at: http://www.northportproject.com
To Contact us send e-mails to: email@example.com