An Overview of Medical Geology Issues in Australia and Oceania

Ljung, Karin, de Vos, Annemarie, Cook, Angus and Weinstein, Philip (2010). An Overview of Medical Geology Issues in Australia and Oceania. In Olle Selinus, Robert B. Finkelman and Jose A. Centeno (Ed.), Medical Geology: A Regional Synthesis (pp. 107-134) Dordrecht , The Netherlands: Springer Science+Business Media B.V.. doi:10.1007/978-90-481-3430-4

Author Ljung, Karin
de Vos, Annemarie
Cook, Angus
Weinstein, Philip
Title of chapter An Overview of Medical Geology Issues in Australia and Oceania
Title of book Medical Geology: A Regional Synthesis
Place of Publication Dordrecht , The Netherlands
Publisher Springer Science+Business Media B.V.
Publication Year 2010
Sub-type Research book chapter (original research)
DOI 10.1007/978-90-481-3430-4
ISBN 9789048134298
Editor Olle Selinus
Robert B. Finkelman
Jose A. Centeno
Chapter number 5
Start page 107
End page 134
Total pages 28
Total chapters 14
Collection year 2011
Language eng
Abstract/Summary Australia and Oceania together make up some of the oldest and youngest geologic formations on the planet, ranging from rocks dating back to 4,400 million years to newly formed volcanic isles in the Pacific. The health issues related to these diverse geological materials range from those derived from exposure to metals and minerals to volcanic emissions including gas and ash, bushfires, dust storms, as well as health threats posed by natural hazards. With the position of a large part of this region within the Ring of Fire, many Australian and Oceanian lives are impacted upon by the forces related to tectonic movement, including earthquakes, tsunamis, and volcanic eruptions. There are also a number of medical geology issues related to the soil in this area. These include geophagy, melioidosis – an infectious disease caused by soil bacteria, and the impacts from ecosystem transformations caused by the disturbance of acid sulfate soils. An example of this is the increase of vector-borne mosquitoes carrying the Ross River virus with the formation of acidic ponds through acid sulfate soil oxidation. The potential adverse health outcomes from disturbing some parts of the land have long been acknowledged by traditional Aboriginal landowners of Australia, who refer to an area particularly rich in uranium and other metals as Sickness Country.
Keyword Australia
Volcanic eruptions
Acid sulfate soils
Vector-borne diseases
Sickness country
Q-Index Code B1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Book Chapter
Collections: Official 2011 Collection
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Created: Tue, 15 Mar 2011, 14:04:54 EST by Geraldine Fitzgerald on behalf of School of Public Health