Persistent Toxic Substances, Food Security and Indigenous Peoples of the Russian North. Final Report
The final report of the PTS project in Russia.
- Discussion on human health effects
- The representative survey groups from indigenous populations in each of the study areas, including 255 mother-child pairs and 1576 adults, have provided comprehensive data on gender, age, place of residence, the nature of traditional activities undertaken, diet, life-style details, self-evaluated health status and family health history. In addition, this database is supported by reliable medical information, obtained from personal medical records held by local hospitals and measurements of blood levels of all major PTSs. All of which information, helps to suggest that the study populations used in this report adequately reflect the general conditions characteristic of the indigenous population of the Russia Arctic as a whole.
- Health effects associated with lifestyle, diet and exposure to PTS
- The dietary and lifestyle survey found that almost 96% of the total adult indigenous population regularly consumes alcoholic drinks, at least once a month. As expected, vodka appears to be the preferred alcoholic drink throughout the Russian Arctic
- The demographic situation and health status of indigenous peoples in the project study areas
- Political and economic changes in Russia have affected the demographic situation in the CAO more than in any other region. The closure of unprofitable mining enterprises, demilitarization, and the destruction of certain social and economic structures led to a massive emigration, in particular of the more recent immigrants, away from the CAO.
- PTS levels in biota and biomagnification in food chains
- These two aims place somewhat different requirements on sampling, sample treatment, and analysis. For the first objective, in order to estimate PTS intake with food, it is necessary to obtain as reliable and representative data as possible on PTS levels in those species and tissues that are widely used as traditional food. For the second objective, it is necessary to determine the average levels of contamination in species representing a range of trophic levels (and in specific tissues of organisms at higher trophic levels), and from this information, evaluate the degree to which PTS are being accumulated and biomagnified in the various food chains that form the basis for food items in the traditional diet.
- Persistant toxic substances (PTS) sources and pathways
- In general, the human environment is a combination of the physical, chemical, biological, social and cultural factors that affect human health. It should be recognized that exposure of humans to PTS can, to certain extent, be dependant on each of these factors. The precise role differs depending on the contaminant concerned, however, with respect to human intake, the chain consisting of ‘source – pathway – biological availability’ applies to all contaminants. Leaving aside the biological aspect of the problem, this chapter focuses on PTS sources, and their physical transport pathways.
- Lifestyle, social and economic status of indigenous peoples
- The numerically small indigenous populations of the Russian Federation (hereafter referred to as Indigenous Peoples) are those residing in the areas of the traditional settlements of their forefathers, preserving their traditional lifestyle, economy and trades, who perceive themselves as an independent ethnic entity, and whose population in the Russian Federation does not exceed 50000. The Common Register of the Indigenous Peoples of the Russian Federation is approved by the Government of the Russian Federation based on information provided by the authorities of the administrative territories of the Russian Federation where the indigenous populations reside.