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FRIDAY, April 29, 2016 — Long-term exposure to fine particles of air pollution from cars, trucks, power plants and manufacturing facilities, is tied to an increased risk of dying from several kinds of cancer, a new study suggests.|
"Air pollution remains a clear, modifiable public health concern," said researcher G. Neil Thomas, a reader in epidemiology at the University of Birmingham in England.
"Put simply, the more of these particulates there are in the air, the greater the risk of getting these cancers," Thomas said, although the study did not prove the particles actually cause cancer.
The study, involving more than 66,000 older residents of Hong Kong, found an increased risk of dying from cancer for even small increases in exposure to these tiny particles of air pollution, which are measured in micrograms per cubic meter (mcg/m3). For example, the overall risk of dying from cancer increased 22 percent with every additional 10 mcg/m3 of exposure, the researchers said.
The raised risk seemed higher for some cancers than others: The additional air pollution was linked to a 42 percent rise in the risk of dying from cancer in the upper digestive tract, and a 35 percent increased risk of dying from liver, bile duct, gall bladder and pancreatic cancer, the researchers said.
Among women, the increased exposure was tied to an 80 percent heightened risk of dying from breast cancer. Among men, the higher pollution levels carried a 36 percent increased risk of dying of lung cancer, the study authors said.
Source: United Press International, "Smog may boost risk for several cancers" By Steven Reinberg, HealthDay News
A study involving more than 66,000 older residents of Hong Kong found an increased risk of dying from cancer for even small increases in exposure to these tiny particles of air pollution. Pictured, Chinese people wear protective face masks to protect against the deadly pollution in Beijing. File photo by Stephen Shaver/UPI
I find these statistics rather alarming and gloomy. This is just air pollution, and doesn't include water pollution or toxic soil contamination. Shouldn't the efforts and legislation to curb pollution be stepped up?