10 Sep 2010

Toxic chemical levels in NZers continue to fall

8:01 pm on 10 September 2010

A study has found the levels of persistent toxic chemicals in New Zealanders' bodies are declining.

The latest update in the Massey University study shows the levels are down 40% on a decade ago.

The study, which tests breast milk in young mothers, shows that levels of toxic chemicals, including the banned pesticide DDT, are continuing to decline through elimination or lower usage.

In 2001, New Zealand became a signatory to the global Treaty on Persistent Organo-Pollutants, which aims to rid them from the environment.

The Ministry of Health's chief adviser for child and youth health, Dr Pat Tuohy, says the quality of health in New Zealand is being greatly assisted by being part of such conventions.