Contaminated soil lingers where apples once grew in Washington

Soil at hundreds of properties contains lead and arsenic that can lower children’s IQs and increase cancer risk.


At homes and day care centers throughout Central Washington, children play in yards contaminated with lead and arsenic. The state’s Department of Ecology knows about this, and has for decades. But many parents and caregivers still do not, despite the risks these chemicals pose specifically to children. 

This video is a production of Earthfix, a collaboration of public media environmental journalists in the Pacific Northwest. Reported by Tony Schick and Courtney Flatt. Written by Schick. Audio produced by Flatt. Video produced by Flatt and photographed/edited by Lena Jackson. Soil testing by EarthFix was paid for through a grant from the Fund for Environmental Journalism.