Risk Assessment from Leather Tanneries in Ulaanbaatar (Mongolia)

Mongolia has a large number of small leather tanneries that process some 30 000 skins per day, for a total output of about 8 million units per year. The tanneries produce wastewater, solid waste and sludge that contain significant amounts of chromium (Cr) and other chemical pollutants. Pilot studies of environmental samples of water, sediment and sludge from the Tuul river and wastewater treatment plants indicate high levels of Cr pollution, which can reach humans through various pathways.

This grant will allow researchers to gather scientific evidence on the environmental distribution of chemical pollutants from tanneries in Khan-Uul district, Ulaanbaatar, and human exposure to such contaminants. The team will also examine occupational risks from poor ergonomics, long shifts and deficient sanitary conditions, and devise and test a risk-mitigation strategy in partnership with stakeholders.

The results will be used to validate existing standards of safety and enforcement, and inform policymaking.

Project ID


Project status


Start Date

Thursday, March 2, 2006

End Date

Thursday, April 2, 2009


24 months

IDRC Officer

Boischio, Ana Amelia

Total funding

CA$ 360,655


Far East Asia, Mongolia, Central Asia, South Asia


Food, Environment, and Health

Project Leader

Dr. Lkhasuren Oyuntogos


Health Sciences University of Mongolia

Institution Country


Institution Website