July 08, 2009

Remember When The Obamas Planted That Garden At The White House?

Yeah, well it turns out the garden and the vegetables it produced may not be as Hope and Change-y as originally predicted.

Instead, an embarrassed White House admitted today that the plot — whose lettuce, herbs and other produce have been consumed by the first family, visiting dignitaries, local school children and a women's homeless shelter — had tested positive for elevated levels of lead.

A spokeswoman for the White House said the soil in the garden had lead concentrations of 93 parts per million of lead. Health experts say it is safe to raise leafy vegetables in soil with concentrations of 10-50 parts per million, and urban gardens typically have raised lead levels. However, it is advised for young children to be tested for exposure to lead if they play in areas where lead concentrations exceed 100 parts per million. The Environmental Protection Agency puts the threshold for dangerous lead levels at 300 parts per million.


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