Claim: Heavy diesel exhaust linked to lung cancer

Doubtful, if this is just being identified now. We will provide a further analysis when we have the study.

The Associated Press reports:

There’s new evidence that exposure to exhaust from diesel engines increases the risk of lung cancer.

Diesel exhaust has long been classified as a probable carcinogen. But the 20-year study from the National Cancer Institute took a closer look by tracking more than 12,000 workers in certain kinds of mines — facilities that mined for potash, lime and other nonmetals. They breathed varying levels of exhaust from diesel-powered equipment, levels higher than the general population encounters.

The most heavily exposed miners had three times the risk of death from lung cancer compared to workers with the lowest exposures, said the study released Friday by the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

But even workers with lower exposures had a 50 percent increased risk, wrote lead author Debra Silverman, an NCI epidemiologist.
“Our findings are important not only for miners but also for the 1.4 million American workers and the 3 million European workers exposed to diesel exhaust, and for urban populations worldwide,” Silverman wrote.

She pointed to some highly polluted cities in China, Mexico and Portugal that in past years have reported diesel exposure levels that over long periods could be comparable to those experienced by miners with lower exposures.

Litigation from some mining companies had delayed release of the study findings.

A separate industry group not involved in that litigation said Friday that the study looked back at mines using decades-old equipment, and there’s far less pollution from diesel engines today.
“Diesel engine and equipment makers, fuel refiners and emissions control technology manufacturers have invested billions of dollars in research to develop and deploy technologies and strategies that reduce engine emissions, now ultimately to near zero levels to meet increasingly stringent clean air standards here in the United States and around the world,” said Allen Schaeffer of the nonprofit Diesel Technology Forum.

5 thoughts on “Claim: Heavy diesel exhaust linked to lung cancer”

  1. Heavy diesel exhaust doesn’t smell too good nor does it feel good to inhale in. Car owners shouldn’t only think of their car’s outer appearance but should include other things, including the cause of the smoke coming out of their cars. Diagnosing a problem through your exhaust pipe can save a lot of time fixing your car because you’d already have an idea what’s wrong with the car. Diesel exhaust should be dealt with, as a means of preventive measure against lung cancer, whether or not they really can cause lung cancer. Prevention is better than cure after all.

  2. Gleik’s Pacific institute got lots of money from the EPA to prove that diesel fumes were harming people in San Francisco especially the elderly (not “the children” this time). I find Gleik’s involvement with this issue troubling.

  3. The 25 years of bussing school children enacted by Ted Kennedy and his ilk was proven to not work! At the cost of billions it was said that “the intentions were good”. Thats the mantra of the left on all mistaken laws they force down our throats. Some of the busses were deisel powered and eventhose with gasoline engines the long exhaust pipes leaked. The good intentions not only cost us billions and brought down I.Q. of the students (both black and white) but caused the spike in asthma we see now. Is cancer next??

  4. How about smokers among the miners. Years ago a study was done on lung cancer caused by radon among miners working in uranium mines. They found workers with high level of smoking had high levels of lung cancer and indians who did not smoke had no lung cancer.

  5. Another attack on diesel fuel that will only result in higher prices. I bet the study doesn’t even look at the material being mined either. Silica causes lung cancer as well and many miners are exposed to it. Bet that never gets mentioned or if it does it is a side note that no one will see

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