Environmental health consequences of land mines.

Publication Date:

19 Jul 2013


Newman RD, Mercer MA. (2013). Environmental health consequences of land mines. Int J Occup Environ Health. 6(3), 243-8. doi: 10.1179/oeh.2000.6.3.243



This article reviews the literature on the environmental effects of anti-personnel land mines globally. Land mines represent an immediate environmental health problem. Between 60 and 70 million land mines are currently in place in over 70 countries. Designed to kill or main humans, including civilians, they injure an estimated 1, 200 persons and kill another 800 every week. Land-mine injuries tend to be serious; an estimated 300,000 persons worldwide have been disabled by them. The problem, politically very controversial, can be resolved only by preventing the further placement of mines, by demining of areas already mined, and by coping with the personal and environmental devastation that they have already caused. Environmental health personnel should be involved in promoting awareness of the problem, in improving services for land-mine victims, and in promoting political efforts to ban further use of land mines.


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