Increased fluoride leeching from the Alcoa plant in Reyðarfjörður this past summer may have damaged the teeth of young animals living in the plant’s vicinity, a new report from the Icelandic Food and Veterinary Authority (MAST) reveals.
Vegetation samples taken from around Alcoa’s plant showed that the concentration of fluoride was over the safe limit for herbivore consumption, RÚV reports. It was discovered last summer that the Alcoa plant’s emissions monitor has been malfunctioning, had not been properly calibrated and meters were not being monitored.
Náttúrustofa Austurlands, the nature monitoring authority of east Iceland, checked on the health of herbivores in the fjord at the time and found no toxicity, however MAST believes that there is reason to continue monitoring the situation, stating that damage brought about by high fluoride consumption can lead to problems in dental formation two years after the fact. MAST will continue to monitor the teeth of young lambs, horses, and cows who had been grazing in the area.
MAST has requested that the Environmental Agency of Iceland engage in increased monitoring and sampling in the area.