The Saikawa lab at Emory University is partnering with Historic Westside Gardens (HWG), whose members and staff live in the community, to test a variety of active and potential growing spaces for heavy metals and metalloids, such as lead, zinc, and cadmium. We are also working to determine safe and inexpensive plants to grow to remediate, or remove, the metals from the soil. This project is funded by the Emory HERCULES Center, which works to understand lifetime exposures and their health impacts. Other partners include the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Georgia Department of Public Health, and the City of Atlanta.
The overall goals of this project are:
1. Measure the concentration and bioavailability of heavy metals in urban gardens
2. Test commonly-used plants and assess if they can reduce heavy metals in contaminated sites.