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What is Human Biomonitoring?

Biomonitoring in the US and Responses

Bioethical Controversies

California's Biomonitoring Program

California Controversies

Future of Biomonitoring

Links and Resources

Comments and Questions to:



California Controversies

Additional controversies surround the California Environmental Contaminant Biomonitoring Program (CECBP) due to the enormous magnitude of the program and institutionalized support from the California state government it receives. These controversies are particularly present in the tricky, and currently unanswered questions regarding the role US citizenship will play in choosing who will be tested.

Who gets tested?
Will undocumented immigrants be included in the program? Will documented permanent residents be included? Who is considered a citizen of California?

Why not just test those who are consistently and heavily exposed to toxics?
Would public health money be better spent on monitoring the people in California who are already known to be exposed to toxics? Should the program focus on at-risk occupations, like farm workers, cleaners, construction workers, and factory workers? Should the program focus on at-risk communities living close to sources of chemical and toxic pollution, like factories, mines, landfills, and polluted waterways? Will the program test undocumented immigrants who work in at-risk occupations or live in at-risk communities?

Will the state’s new financial focus on large-scale biomonitoring affect existing programs?
Will monitoring a representative sample of Californians reduce funding for existing and proposed public health programs targeting at-risk communities? Or will the new large-scale program serve to highlight existing disparities between exposures to toxics?








Image 13. Air pollution on a farm in the central valley of California.

Last updated:  May, 2007


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