If our elected officials won’t help us with environmental toxins, who will? L.D. 1162 was designed so that state toxicologists, geologists and epidemiologists could gain more information on the dose effects of arsenic in our well water. This was a bipartisan bill that faced no formal opposition until Gov. Paul LePage, with support from Sen. Earle McCormick and Rep. Randall Greenwood, defeated it.

In May of this year, MPBN reported, “Conservative ideologues… argued that government has no useful role in protecting public health.” I take exception — only government can deal with the magnitude of Maine’s arsenic problem.

Arsenic is highly toxic, even at low levels. Unsafe levels have been found in 29 percent of private wells in Kennebec County. Mainers have a 20 percent higher risk for urinary bladder cancer, which may well be due to the carcinogenic effects of arsenic. High levels also reduce the IQ of our children, cause stomach and intestinal problems, and other chronic diseases.

Preventative medicine is the best medicine. Preventing lower IQs in children, cancer in adults, and chronic diseases not only saves money and lives, but improves our economy.

Why do politicians want to keep arsenic in Maine well water out of the news? Why do they ignore science? If politicians can distract you with the wrong questions, then any of the answers really don’t matter.

Dr. Lawrence Buggia


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