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Breathing kills

| October 21, 2013

The air people breathe is laced with cancer-causing substances and should be classified as carcinogenic to humans, the World Health Organization’s (WHO) cancer agency said last week, according to a Reuters News story.

The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) cited data indicating that in 2010, 223,000 deaths from lung cancer worldwide resulted from air pollution.

There was convincing evidence also that such pollution increased the risk of bladder cancer.

In a statement released after a weeklong meeting of experts reviewing the latest scientific literature, IARC said both outdoor air pollution and “particulate matter—a major component of it—would now be classified among its Group 1 human carcinogens.

That ranks them alongside more than 100 other known cancer-causing substances in IARC’s Group 1, including asbestos, plutonium, silica dust, ultraviolet radiation and tobacco smoke.

Air pollution, however, poses a unique problem in that is the only cancer-causing substance among the above list that individuals are not able to avoid to some degree.

Category: Breaking News

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