A new report from the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) finds that chemical exposure is a potential concern for children around the state. The report measured for potential exposure to air pollution, metals and pesticides in 232 pre-school children from two communities: neighborhoods in North Minneapolis and Becker, Todd, and Wadena counties in north-central Minnesota.

“The purpose was really to get a sense of children’s environmental exposures in these areas and to help us learn about potential ways kids might be coming into contact with the chemicals and ways we can reduce those exposures.”

MDH’s Jessica Nelson says the project found that children from the urban area had higher levels of air pollution chemicals compared to kids from the rural areas. And children from the rural areas had higher levels of one pesticide 2,4-D, compared to urban children. 2,4-D, is an herbicide used on some agricultural crops and for lawn treatment.