“Mitigating Uranium Risks”

… Collaborative safety measures and vigilance in iranium detection andanagement”

By Francis Maingaila

Lusaka, Zambia24 (17-04-2024) – The detection of uranium during routine water sampling at a local treatment plant at Barrick Lumwana Mine has sparked attention, yet poses no immediate threat to human health or the environment.

Mutati emphasized that the uranium concentration of 0.037 milligrams per liter does not pose an immediate risk to human health, with analysis confirming levels below international safety standards.

Minister of Science and Technology, Felix Mutati, assured the public during a media briefing that Barrick Lumwana Mining Company promptly alerted the Radiation Protection Authority (RPA) upon discovering elevated uranium levels in drinking water, highlighting their dedication to safety.

Immediate measures were taken, including suspending the use of water from the treatment plant and providing alternative sources for employees.

The collaboration between the RPA and the National Institute of Scientific and Industrial Research aims to thoroughly assess the risks associated with uranium exposure.

Educational sessions have been conducted for employees to raise awareness about uranium and radiation hazards, empowering them with knowledge to ensure their safety.

The Ministry of Technology and Science is enforcing regulations to uphold safety standards in mining activities.

Zambia’s hosting of the World Skills Competition Africa underscores its commitment to skills development and global engagement.

Continuous joint awareness campaigns and environmental monitoring by the RPA and NISIR aim to prevent potential harm from radiation exposure, highlighting the importance of proactive safety measures, stakeholder collaboration, and ongoing vigilance in industrial settings involving radiation.

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