Arsenic is a natural element, but also a poisonous substance. It is released both from certain human activities and naturally from the Earth’s crust. Humans are exposed to arsenic mainly through food and water, particularly in certain areas where the groundwater is in contact with arsenic-containing minerals.
It is often used to preserve wood. Though no longer used in residential building, it can still be used in industrial applications. Organic compounds can also be used as a pesticide.
Arsenic is an extremely poisonous metalloid element that has be used by ancient Romans, Greeks, and Egyptians. Today some typical uses for arsenic are: insecticides, alloys, weed killers, poison, semi-conductors, and medical treatments.
The US wood treatment industry voluntarily ceased using arsenic compounds for preservatives at the end of 2003.
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