A growing number of schools in the U.S. are being built on abandoned dumps or too close to polluting factories, placing children’s health at risk, according to a report released today by the Center for Health, Environment and Justice. The report focuses on case studies of 15 schools built on risky sites, in cities ranging from Houston, Texas, to Providence, R.I. It also calls attention to the health problems associated with pesticide-spraying near schools. The group says local school authorities have not been given adequate federal guidelines on where to build new schools, and therefore they sometimes decide to build on cheap land that is contaminated. “It’s a doable, fixable problem,” says the center’s executive director, Lois Gibbs, who focused the world’s attention on Love Canal in 1978.

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