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Slowly poisoned: health consequences of pollution and environmental toxins Martin Donohoe, MD, FACP Portland Slowly poisoned: health consequences of pollution and environmental toxins Martin Donohoe, MD, FACP Portland State University Campaign for Safe Foods, Oregon Physicians for Social Responsibility

Overview • • • Public health approach Air pollution Garbage Toxins Education/Corporate Influence Progress Overview • • • Public health approach Air pollution Garbage Toxins Education/Corporate Influence Progress and Solutions

Some Major Sources of Air Pollution • Industry - #1 • Agriculture • Automobiles Some Major Sources of Air Pollution • Industry - #1 • Agriculture • Automobiles

Some Major Sources of Air Pollution • Indoor combustion of coal and biomass (wood, Some Major Sources of Air Pollution • Indoor combustion of coal and biomass (wood, charcoal, crop residues, and animal dung) for cooking, heating and food preservation – Used by almost 3 billion people worldwide – Causes 2 million deaths/yr – Associated with multiple pulmonary conditions – Solar cookers may replace

Air Pollution Air Pollution

Air Pollution Air Pollution

Air Pollution • Top ten most polluted cities in the world are in China Air Pollution • Top ten most polluted cities in the world are in China and India • Most polluted areas in US: –LA, Houston, San Joaquin Valley in Central California, Pittsburgh

Health Effects of Air Pollution • Causes approximately 60, 000 75, 000 premature deaths/yr. Health Effects of Air Pollution • Causes approximately 60, 000 75, 000 premature deaths/yr. in U. S. (656, 000 in China) –More than are killed by auto accidents • 1. 8 million worldwide

Health Effects of Air Pollution • Air pollution causes asthma and impairs lung development Health Effects of Air Pollution • Air pollution causes asthma and impairs lung development and function • Deaths from cardiopulmonary diseases correlate with air pollution levels in US cities –Both day to day and over time

Health Effects of Air Pollution • Increased admissions for CHF, asthma, COPD, PVD, and Health Effects of Air Pollution • Increased admissions for CHF, asthma, COPD, PVD, and cerebrovascular disease (stroke and TIA) • Increased ventricular arrythmias • Increased lung cancer mortality • Decreased exercise tolerance, increased pulmonary symptoms

Health Effects of Air Pollution • • Increased risk of DVT Increased risk of Health Effects of Air Pollution • • Increased risk of DVT Increased risk of rheumatoid arthritis Impaired sperm production Premature births (1/3 more common in large towns/cities)

Health Effects of Air Pollution • Increase in SGA and LBW infants • Increased Health Effects of Air Pollution • Increase in SGA and LBW infants • Increased risk of appendicitis – ? Via link with inflammation? • Increased numbers of migraines • Days lost from work/school

Ozone Destruction • Ozone hole over Antarctic (2½X size of Europe) • Arctic ozone Ozone Destruction • Ozone hole over Antarctic (2½X size of Europe) • Arctic ozone hole larger – 40% of Arctic ozone destroyed • Increased cataracts (UV damage) • Increased lifetime melanoma risk – 1/1500 - 1930 – 1/68 - today

Automobiles Automobiles

Automobiles • Number of autos -US: 1 car / 2 people -Mexico: 1/8 -China: Automobiles • Number of autos -US: 1 car / 2 people -Mexico: 1/8 -China: 1/100 (increasing; leaded gasoline) • 1 billion cars worldwide • Global auto population to double in 25 -50 years

Automobiles • Average miles traveled/car/year in U. S. – 1965 - 4, 570 mi. Automobiles • Average miles traveled/car/year in U. S. – 1965 - 4, 570 mi. – 1975 - 6, 150 mi. – 1985 - 7, 460 mi. – 1995 - 9, 220 mi. – 2008 – 12, 000 mi.

Automobiles • 25 lbs. of CO 2 produced for every gallon of gasoline manufactured, Automobiles • 25 lbs. of CO 2 produced for every gallon of gasoline manufactured, distributed, and then burned in a vehicle • U. S. energy costs exceed $500 billion/yr. (plus military costs to keep foreign oil flowing)

Automobiles • Average fuel efficiency of U. S. autos stagnant – Ford Model T Automobiles • Average fuel efficiency of U. S. autos stagnant – Ford Model T – 25 mpg (1908); Avg. Ford vehicle – 22. 6 mpg (2003) – Cars: 27. 5 mpg required by 2011, 37. 5 mpg required by 2015; 54. 5 mpg by 2025 – Light trucks / SUVs: 23. 5 mpg by 2011, 28. 6 mpg by 2015 – European and Japanese standards higher

Automobiles: Alternatives • Relatively low oil prices (until recently) • Growing market (until recently) Automobiles: Alternatives • Relatively low oil prices (until recently) • Growing market (until recently) for lowefficiency pickups, minivans, and SUVs • Rapid transit • Electric cars – killed by oil companies, automakers, tire manufacturers in early 20 th century – Convicted under Sherman Antitrust Act

Automobiles: Alternatives • Car sharing • Pay-as-you-drive auto insurance • “Peak Pricing” and “Congestion Automobiles: Alternatives • Car sharing • Pay-as-you-drive auto insurance • “Peak Pricing” and “Congestion Fees” – E. g. , London → 21% decrease in traffic, 43% increase in bus ridership, cleaner air • Bicycles/walking – 30% of all trips by bike in Amsterdam; 2% in Portland, OR

Automobiles: Alternatives • Busses • Trains – 15 x more efficient per passenger than Automobiles: Alternatives • Busses • Trains – 15 x more efficient per passenger than autos • Natural gas and/or gasohol -generate less CO 2

Automobiles: Alternatives • Telecommuting • Biodiesel – Vegetable oil-based fuel – Problem: Cheapest biodiesel Automobiles: Alternatives • Telecommuting • Biodiesel – Vegetable oil-based fuel – Problem: Cheapest biodiesel is oil from palm trees; Indonesia, Malaysia deforesting areas to plant palm trees, leading to increase in global CO 2

Automobiles: Alternatives • Solar cars • Hydrogen-powered cars – Byproduct = water – Problem: Automobiles: Alternatives • Solar cars • Hydrogen-powered cars – Byproduct = water – Problem: Hydrogen production requires fossil fuels

Energy Spending/Research • Since 1947, the U. S. has spent $145 billion on nuclear Energy Spending/Research • Since 1947, the U. S. has spent $145 billion on nuclear R and D vs. $5 billion on renewables R and D • < 5% of the DOE’s budget pays for energy efficiency and renewables • BP invests $100 million annually in clean energy = amt. it spends annually to market its new name and environmentally-friendly image of moving “Beyond Petroleum”

Garbage • 98% of the country’s total refuse is industrial waste; 2% municipal waste Garbage • 98% of the country’s total refuse is industrial waste; 2% municipal waste • American produce 4. 4 lbs/d garbage • In a lifetime, the average American will throw away 6500 times his/her adult weight in garbage

Garbage • In one year, Americans generate 236 million tons of garbage – 30% Garbage • In one year, Americans generate 236 million tons of garbage – 30% recycled – 164 million tons thrown away

U. S. Garbage Composition • • Paper and Paperboard - 39% Yard Waste - U. S. Garbage Composition • • Paper and Paperboard - 39% Yard Waste - 13% Food Waste - 10% Plastics - 12% Metals - 8% Glass - 6% Wood - 5%

U. S. Recycling Rates • • • Tires - 22% Plastic containers - 25% U. S. Recycling Rates • • • Tires - 22% Plastic containers - 25% Overall plastics – 5% Glass containers - 28% Yard waste - 41% Paper and Paperboard - 42% Aluminum packaging - 54% Steel cans - 60% Auto batteries - 93%

Garbage • Landfills (2300 in US) • Incinerators • Garbage exports Garbage • Landfills (2300 in US) • Incinerators • Garbage exports

Toxins Toxins

Annual World Production of Synthetic Organic Chemicals • 1930 - 1 million tons • Annual World Production of Synthetic Organic Chemicals • 1930 - 1 million tons • 1950 - 7 million tons • 1970 - 63 million tons • 1990 - 500 million tons • 2000 - 1 billion tons

Toxins • 6 trillion tons of over 85, 000 chemicals produced annually – 2000 Toxins • 6 trillion tons of over 85, 000 chemicals produced annually – 2000 -3000 new chemicals registered each year • 2/3 of those introduced since 1983 marked “trade secret, ” making investigation difficult – More than 90% have never been screened for toxicity – Consequence of 1976 Toxic Substances Control Act

Toxic Pollutants • 85, 000 known or suspected hazardous waste sites in the U. Toxic Pollutants • 85, 000 known or suspected hazardous waste sites in the U. S. – Plus up to 600, 000 lightly contaminated former industrial sites (“brownfields”) • EPA estimates that there will be 217, 000 new hazardous waste sites by 2033 – Will cost hundreds of billions of dollars to mitigate environmental impacts

Toxic Pollutants • 1 in 4 U. S. citizens lives within 4 mile of Toxic Pollutants • 1 in 4 U. S. citizens lives within 4 mile of a Superfund site (approximately 1, 305 sites listed; another 2, 500 sites eligible) • Taxpayers paying increasing share of cleanup costs – 54% in 2003 – Vast majority presently – Overall funding decreasing

Toxins • Body burden of industrial chemicals, pollutants and pesticides high – Environmental Working Toxins • Body burden of industrial chemicals, pollutants and pesticides high – Environmental Working Group (2004)found 287 pesticides, consumer product ingredients, and wastes from burning coal, gasoline, and garbage in umbilical cord blood • Many other compounds not even tested; numbers undoubtedly higher

Fetuses and Children are Most Vulnerable to Toxins • Greater pound-for-pound exposure • Immature, Fetuses and Children are Most Vulnerable to Toxins • Greater pound-for-pound exposure • Immature, porous blood brain barrier • Lower levels of chemical binding proteins, allowing more chemicals to reach “target” organs

Fetuses and Children are Most Vulnerable to Toxins • Organs/organ systems rapidly developing, thus Fetuses and Children are Most Vulnerable to Toxins • Organs/organ systems rapidly developing, thus more vulnerable to damage • Systems that detoxify and excrete industrial chemicals are not fully developed • Longer future life span allows more time for adverse effects to arise

Toxins in breast milk • Human babies at the top of the food chain Toxins in breast milk • Human babies at the top of the food chain • Fat soluble toxins concentrated in breast milk – Benefits of breast feeding still exceed risks • Birth defects, learning disabilities increasing – Toxins play important role

Toxins and gender • Sex ratio changing: – Normal = 105 boys/girls born (skewed Toxins and gender • Sex ratio changing: – Normal = 105 boys/girls born (skewed by early male mortality) – Fewer boys being born in industrialized countries • Other causes include obesity, older parental age, stress, fertility aides

Pesticides • 5 billion lbs/yr pesticides worldwide – 1. 1 billion lbs/yr in U. Pesticides • 5 billion lbs/yr pesticides worldwide – 1. 1 billion lbs/yr in U. S. –About 3 lbs/person/yr in U. S.

Pesticides • EPA estimates U. S. farm workers suffer up to 300, 000 pesticide-related Pesticides • EPA estimates U. S. farm workers suffer up to 300, 000 pesticide-related acute illnesses and injuries per year – Possibly linked to higher rates of sarcoidosis in agricultural workers – Pesticide-exposed men have impaired semen quality, which is associated with reduced fertility and testicular cancer

Pesticides • NAS estimates that pesticides in food could cause up to 1 million Pesticides • NAS estimates that pesticides in food could cause up to 1 million cancers in the current generation of Americans • Linked to autism, Parkinson’s Disease, diabetes, obesity (with prenatal exposure), depression, ADHD • Children living on or near farms score 5 points lower on IQ tests and other mental and verbal tests – May be due to pesticide exposure

Anthropological Study of Children Exposed to Pesticides Children from villages practicing organic agriculture Children Anthropological Study of Children Exposed to Pesticides Children from villages practicing organic agriculture Children from villages practicing non-organic agriculture

Pesticides • 1, 000 people killed by pesticides over the last 6 years (WHO) Pesticides • 1, 000 people killed by pesticides over the last 6 years (WHO) • US health and environmental costs $12 billion/yr (2005)

Pesticides • Only 5 states (CA, LA, MI, TX, NY) currently track pesticide sales Pesticides • Only 5 states (CA, LA, MI, TX, NY) currently track pesticide sales and use and/or collect data on pesticide-related illnesses • 2008: USDA axes national survey charting pesticide use • EPA, NAS currently allows pesticide testing in humans, despite strong opposition • Monsanto’s Roundup purchased by US government for aerial spraying in Colombia as part of “War on Drugs”

Pesticides Pesticides

Pesticides • $2. 4 billion worth of insecticides and fungicides sold to American farmers Pesticides • $2. 4 billion worth of insecticides and fungicides sold to American farmers each year • Pesticide runoff contributes to coastal dead zones – Baltic Sea, Mouth of Mississippi in Gulf of Mexico – Red tides • Pesticides inhibit nitrogen fixation, decrease crop yields

Pesticides • Evidence suggests that pesticides promote pests (vs. natural pesticides) • 30% of Pesticides • Evidence suggests that pesticides promote pests (vs. natural pesticides) • 30% of medieval crop harvests were destroyed by pests vs. 3542% of current crop harvests – Implies organic farming more costeffective

Pesticides and Produce • The Dirty Dozen: peaches, apples, bell peppers, celery, nectarines, strawberries, Pesticides and Produce • The Dirty Dozen: peaches, apples, bell peppers, celery, nectarines, strawberries, cherries, kale, lettuce, grapes (imported), carrots, pears • The Clean 15: onions, avocados, sweet corn, pineapples, mangos, asparagus, sweet peas, kiwis, cabbages, eggplant, papayas, watermelon, broccoli, tomatoes, sweet potatoes

Lead • 2 million US children with elevated levels • 120 million people with Lead • 2 million US children with elevated levels • 120 million people with level > 10 mcg/d. L worldwide –Due to increased environmental exposure and, possibly, early umbilical cord clamping • #s affected dropping

Lead • Affects brain development, associated with lower IQ – No safe level for Lead • Affects brain development, associated with lower IQ – No safe level for neurological development • Levels between 4 and 10 significantly increase risk of cardio- and cerebrovascular disease • Elevated levels associated with crime and violent behavior • Poor, African-Americans more commonly exposed

Lead Poisoning: S/S, DX, and RX • S/S: AP, CP, arthralgias, myalgias, HA, anorexia, Lead Poisoning: S/S, DX, and RX • S/S: AP, CP, arthralgias, myalgias, HA, anorexia, ↓libido, ↓memory, anemia, nephropathy, HTN, cataracts, CV dz, cancer, ↓sperm count, lead line on teeth, basophilic stipling • Dx: lead level, FEP (free erythrocyte protoporphyrin) • Rx: ↓exposure, Cs. EDTA, DMSA

Toxic Pollutants – Economic Costs • Birth defects, learning disabilities increasing – Toxins play Toxic Pollutants – Economic Costs • Birth defects, learning disabilities increasing – Toxins play important role • Americans pay more than $55 billion annually for direct medical expenses plus special schooling and long-term care for pediatric diseases caused by lead • This excludes the greatest toxic pollutant tobacco

Mercury • Released into air by coal combustion, industrial processes, mining, waste disposal, and Mercury • Released into air by coal combustion, industrial processes, mining, waste disposal, and volcanoes – 4500 tons/yr • Travels throughout atmosphere and settles in oceans and waterways • Bacteria convert it to toxic methyl-mercury • Travels up food chain via fish

Mercury • 16% of women of childbearing age exceed the EPA’s “safe” mercury level Mercury • 16% of women of childbearing age exceed the EPA’s “safe” mercury level • Freshwater fish mercury levels too high for pregnant women to eat in 43 states • Mercury dental amalgams pose health risks to pregnant women, unborn babies, and children (FDA) • Contaminant in high fructose corn syrup

Mercury: S/S, Dx, and Rx • S/S: neuropsychiatric symptoms, inflammation of gums with excessive Mercury: S/S, Dx, and Rx • S/S: neuropsychiatric symptoms, inflammation of gums with excessive salivation, rash, nephropathy, hearing loss – Linked to autism • Dx: mercury levels in air, blood, urine (>100 mcg/l in blood and/or urine = toxic) • Rx: chelation with BAL, penicillamine, DMPS, DMSA

Arsenic • Contaminates groundwater in Bangladesh, also, India, China, Mexico, Argentina, Thailand, and parts Arsenic • Contaminates groundwater in Bangladesh, also, India, China, Mexico, Argentina, Thailand, and parts of the U. S. – 13 million Americans have drinking water exceeding EPA’s “safe level” – Exposure also via rice (esp. brown), seafood • Used to pressure treat wood in US and elsewhere

Health Consequences of Arsenic Exposure • • • Miscarriage, low birth weight Pigmentary skin Health Consequences of Arsenic Exposure • • • Miscarriage, low birth weight Pigmentary skin changes Diabetes Heart Disease Increased risk of lung, bladder, and skin cancers

Ayurvedic Medicines • Lead, mercury, or arsenic found in 1/5 of both U. S. Ayurvedic Medicines • Lead, mercury, or arsenic found in 1/5 of both U. S. - and India-manufactured Ayurvedic medicines purchased via the internet

Manganese/Cadmuim • Manganese: – Welders exposed via fumes – Causes “manganism” (like Parkinson’s Disease) Manganese/Cadmuim • Manganese: – Welders exposed via fumes – Causes “manganism” (like Parkinson’s Disease) – Welding companies covered up link for decades (like lead paint, etc. ) • Cadmium – Neurological damage, osteoporosis, periodontal disease

Phosphorus/Phosphates • Phosphorus in dishwater detergents – Contribute to eutrophication, harmful algal blooms – Phosphorus/Phosphates • Phosphorus in dishwater detergents – Contribute to eutrophication, harmful algal blooms – Banned in 16 states • Phosphate in fertilizers – Agricultural runoff contributes to algal blooms, dead zones – World supply running critically low – Composting would recycle, return to soil

Perchlorate • Perchlorate – Toxic air pollutant, endocrine and reproductive toxin, likely human carcinogen, Perchlorate • Perchlorate – Toxic air pollutant, endocrine and reproductive toxin, likely human carcinogen, exposure increases risk of bipolar disorder and PTSD – Used in rocket fuel, dry cleaning • Alternative = “wet cleaning” with compressed, liquefied CO 2 – EPA requiring phaseout of use in residential areas by 2020

Pepper Spray • Contains TCE (trichloroethylene) and PCE (tetrachloroethylene) • Both can cause liver Pepper Spray • Contains TCE (trichloroethylene) and PCE (tetrachloroethylene) • Both can cause liver and kidney cancer, lymphoma, and other illnesses

Cell phones • ? Link to parotid gland tumors? • ? Link to brain Cell phones • ? Link to parotid gland tumors? • ? Link to brain tumors? – Gliomas? – Acoustic neuromas? • Precautionary principle – hands-free headset – ? Other safety benefits?

Toxic Pollutants • Dioxin - from manufacturing, medical incinerators, defoliants (“Agent Orange”) -Love Canal Toxic Pollutants • Dioxin - from manufacturing, medical incinerators, defoliants (“Agent Orange”) -Love Canal -cancers • Nitrates/nitrites, trichloroethylene, vinyl chloride, ozone • PFOA (Teflon): multiple health effects; being phased out by Dupont

Hazardous Waste and Fertilizer • Legal to dispose of hazardous waste by turning it Hazardous Waste and Fertilizer • Legal to dispose of hazardous waste by turning it into fertilizer • e. g. Uranium-laced fertilizer in Oklahoma, lead-laced fertilizer in SW Wash. , other mixtures containing arsenic, cadmium and dioxins • Unclear if a health hazard • No requirement that toxins be listed on ingredient labels

Persistent Organic Pollutants • Toxic, remain in environment longterm, resist degradation, can travel long Persistent Organic Pollutants • Toxic, remain in environment longterm, resist degradation, can travel long distances • Bioaccumulate - higher concentrations as you move up the food chain

Persistent Organic Pollutants • 10 of these are endocrine disrupters – egs. - DDT, Persistent Organic Pollutants • 10 of these are endocrine disrupters – egs. - DDT, chlordane, heptachlor, dioxins, PCBs – possible cause of decreasing male sperm counts (100 million/ejaculate in 1950, 50 million in 1990) and increasing cases of hypospadias. early puberty, and breast cancer – Cases of hypospadias doubled in U. S. between late 1960 s and early 1990 s

Endocrine Disruptors • Linked to: – Obesity – Insulin resistance – Diabetes – PCOS, Endocrine Disruptors • Linked to: – Obesity – Insulin resistance – Diabetes – PCOS, endometriosis, uterine fibroids, premature ovarian failure – Male and female reproductive tract abnormalities

Endocrine Disruptors • Linked to: – Impaired fertility – Low birth weight, impaired fetal Endocrine Disruptors • Linked to: – Impaired fertility – Low birth weight, impaired fetal development and fetal anomalies – Multiple cancers (including breast, colon, prostate, testicular) – Thyroid disease – Neuroendocrine abnormalities

Toxic Pollutants and DNA • Toxins can damage DNA • New evidence from rats Toxic Pollutants and DNA • Toxins can damage DNA • New evidence from rats of epigenetic transgenerational effects of endocrine disruptors on male fertility in rats • In 1938, 0. 5% of men were functionally sterile – 8 -12% in 2006

Phthalates/Bisphenol A • Found in construction materials, clothing, toys, cashier receipts, cosmetics, pills, dental Phthalates/Bisphenol A • Found in construction materials, clothing, toys, cashier receipts, cosmetics, pills, dental fills/sealants, added to PVCs in IV tubing/other plastics – At least 47 million prescription meds – Exposure levels very high – FDA approves • 5 million metric tons consumed by industry per year (13% in the U. S. ) • Exxon Mobil and BASF dominate the market

Phthalates/Bisphenol A • Wal-Mart, Target, Toys ‘R’ Us phasing out, San Francisco, California, Europe, Phthalates/Bisphenol A • Wal-Mart, Target, Toys ‘R’ Us phasing out, San Francisco, California, Europe, and Canada have banned phthalates; Australia phasing out use in baby bottles – 9 states, Chicago, Multnomah County (Portland), OR, and Suffolk County, NY have banned BPA in baby bottles and sipper cups

Phthalates/Bisphenol A • Consumer Product Safety Commission reforms of 2008 eliminate lead and phthalates Phthalates/Bisphenol A • Consumer Product Safety Commission reforms of 2008 eliminate lead and phthalates from toys and children’s products • Sugar-derived epoxy lining could replace BPA in cans

Phthalates/Bisphenol A • 2009: Ban Poisonous Additives Act (to ban use of BPA in Phthalates/Bisphenol A • 2009: Ban Poisonous Additives Act (to ban use of BPA in food and beverage containers and items used by young children) submitted in U. S. House and Senate • 2009: BPA-Free Kids Act (to ban BPA in food and beverage containers and utensils marketed for children aged 3 or younger) introduced into U. S. Senate • 2011: EPA to propose ban on BPA in baby bottles and sippy cups

Phthalates/BPA • 90% of government-funded studies found adverse health effects – vs. 0% of Phthalates/BPA • 90% of government-funded studies found adverse health effects – vs. 0% of industry-funded studies • Associated with: – demasculinization and alterations in genitalia in male infants – low birth weight – lower and higher testosterone levels – PCOS in women – lower sperm counts in adults; impaired sperm function – male sexual dysfunction

Phthalates/BPA • Associated with: – Infertility – childhood behavioral, emotional, and conduct problems – Phthalates/BPA • Associated with: – Infertility – childhood behavioral, emotional, and conduct problems – obesity – asthma – heart disease – diabetes – elevated liver enzymes

Phthalates/PVCs and Medical Devices • EPA regulations weak, based on 50 year old study Phthalates/PVCs and Medical Devices • EPA regulations weak, based on 50 year old study • FDA has advised healthcare providers to use alternatives to DEHP -containing PVC medical devices, esp. in neonatal units • Banned by EU, CA, and WA – Federal legislation pending

Teflon (PFOA – perfluorooctanate) • Non-stick material made by Dupont • Chemicals released under Teflon (PFOA – perfluorooctanate) • Non-stick material made by Dupont • Chemicals released under high heat and when cookware damaged • Exposure linked with cancer, birth defects, and liver damage • Dupont hit with largest-ever civil penalty ($10. 25 million) in 2006 for concealing health consequences and transmission from mother to fetus

Environmental Racism and Toxic Imperialism • Environmental Racism – Polluting factories/waste dumps/incinerators more common Environmental Racism and Toxic Imperialism • Environmental Racism – Polluting factories/waste dumps/incinerators more common in lower SES neighborhoods – “Cancer Belt” (Baton Rouge to New Orleans) – More cardiovascular disease • Toxic Imperialism • WHO estimates toxic chemical exposures responsible for 4. 9 million deaths and 86 million DALYs in 2004

Mining and Pollution: Gold • Cyanide “heap leach” gold mining – cyanide dripped over Mining and Pollution: Gold • Cyanide “heap leach” gold mining – cyanide dripped over crushed rock to extract gold – taxpayers often stuck with cleanup costs

Mining and Pollution: Gold • International gold mining linked to human rights abuses • Mining and Pollution: Gold • International gold mining linked to human rights abuses • 84% of gold becomes jewelry – To save the environment, consider not buying gold jewelry

Should I Send Flowers? • Most commercial flowers grown in sealed greenhouses in developing Should I Send Flowers? • Most commercial flowers grown in sealed greenhouses in developing countries (e. g. , Colombia, India China, Mexico) • Carry 50 times the amount of pesticides allowed on food – One fifth of chemicals used banned in U. S. • Workers underpaid, 50 -60% suffer from pesticide poisoning

Electronic Waste • Only 5 -10% of computers recycled • Most sent overseas, children Electronic Waste • Only 5 -10% of computers recycled • Most sent overseas, children disassemble – Some returns to U. S. in children’s jewelry • EU now requires electronics firms to recycle and to eliminate lead, cadmium and mercury from their products • Dell, www. computertakeback. com

Electronic Waste • European laws re extended producer responsibility and product liability – Similar Electronic Waste • European laws re extended producer responsibility and product liability – Similar San Francisco resolution • Maine passed first law requiring elctronic manufacturers to pay for recycling their discarded products

Medical Waste • The 6, 000 US hospitals generate 2 million tons of waste Medical Waste • The 6, 000 US hospitals generate 2 million tons of waste per year; clinics and doctors’ offices an additional 700, 000 tons • 850, 000 tons incinerated – 15% infectious waste – incinerated pollutants include dioxin, mercury, cadmium and lead

Medical Waste • One hospital bed generates between 16 and 23 lbs/day of waste Medical Waste • One hospital bed generates between 16 and 23 lbs/day of waste • Outbreak of hepatitis B in India due to black market in medical waste and supplies (2009)

Medical Waste • Solutions: – Strengthen EPA regulations – Segregation and alternatives to incineration Medical Waste • Solutions: – Strengthen EPA regulations – Segregation and alternatives to incineration would cost < $1/patient/day 80% of thermometers no longer contain mercury – Remove PVCs from medical supplies (e. g. , IV tubing)

Medical Waste • Organizations: – Health Care Without Harm – Green Health Center Movement Medical Waste • Organizations: – Health Care Without Harm – Green Health Center Movement • NAS: Hospitals built and operated on more environmentally sound principles save money and produce better patient outcomes

Water Pollution • 40% of U. S. waters are unfit for fishing or swimming Water Pollution • 40% of U. S. waters are unfit for fishing or swimming – beach closings • The Jordan River (believed to be the gateway to the Garden of Eden and the place where Jesus was baptized) is now more than 50% raw sewage and agricultural runoff

Willamette River • One of the most polluted rivers in the American West – Willamette River • One of the most polluted rivers in the American West – Arsenic, lead, mercury, DDT • 5. 5 mile stretch Superfund site • Current law allows polluters to calculate discharges using “toxic mixing zones” to get around limits on discharges

Water • In developing countries, 90 -95% of sewage and 70% of industrial wastes Water • In developing countries, 90 -95% of sewage and 70% of industrial wastes are dumped untreated into the local water supply • 13, 000 -15, 000 deaths per day worldwide from water-related diseases • 4/10 people worldwide have no access to any latrine, toilet, bucket or box

Water Pollution: Bathtub=Toilet=Source of Drinking Water Water Pollution: Bathtub=Toilet=Source of Drinking Water

Infamous Industrial Disasters • Minimata, Japan, 1920 s-1970 s (Chisso Corporation) - methylmercury poisoning Infamous Industrial Disasters • Minimata, Japan, 1920 s-1970 s (Chisso Corporation) - methylmercury poisoning -400 dead; 10, 000 injured • Bhopal, India, 1984 (Union Carbide, purchased by Dow in 2001) - methyl isocyanate gas – 7000 -10, 000 dead within 3 days, 15, 00020, 000 more over next 10 years; tens of thousands injured – persistent water and soil contamination

Minimata Disease W Eugene Smith Minimata Disease W Eugene Smith

Infamous Industrial Disasters • Love Canal: – Hooker Electrochemical Company (parent company Occidental Petroleum) Infamous Industrial Disasters • Love Canal: – Hooker Electrochemical Company (parent company Occidental Petroleum) dumps over 21, 000 tons of chemical waste in 1940 s and 1950 s – Miscarriages, birth defects, cancers – Occidental found liable

Infamous Industrial Disasters • Leads to Superfund Law • Today only seven states prohibit Infamous Industrial Disasters • Leads to Superfund Law • Today only seven states prohibit construction of schools on or near hazardous waste sites – Half-million children attend schools within ½ mile of toxic waste dumps in NY, NJ, MA< and MI alone

Infamous Industrial Disasters • Chernobyl, USSR, 1986 - nuclear power plant explosion -25 -100 Infamous Industrial Disasters • Chernobyl, USSR, 1986 - nuclear power plant explosion -25 -100 dead, up to 1, 000 injured acutely, NCI estimates 10 -75 K thyroid cancers • Alaska, Exxon Valdez, 1989 - oil spill -wildlife devastated, $5 billion damage • 2006 BP Alaskan pipeline ruptures

Since Exxon Valdez • At least 1. 1 million tons of oil have spilled Since Exxon Valdez • At least 1. 1 million tons of oil have spilled from tankers worldwide –Equivalent to 30 Valdez incidents • 2010 BP Gulf oil disaster (Michigan too) • 2011: Yellowstone River

Oil Pollution is Expensive to Clean Up Oil Pollution is Expensive to Clean Up

Oil Slicks Kill Marine Life Oil Slicks Kill Marine Life

The Military and Pollution • World’s single largest polluter • 6 -10% of global The Military and Pollution • World’s single largest polluter • 6 -10% of global air pollution • 2 -11% of world raw material use

The Military and Pollution • 97% of all high level and 78% of all The Military and Pollution • 97% of all high level and 78% of all low level nuclear waste – 1054 U. S. nuclear tests since 1940 s, 331 in atmosphere – 104 U. S. nuclear reactors – More than 210 million liters of radioactive and chemical waste stored at Hanford, WA • Site plagued by leaks, cost overruns

The Military and Pollution • Pentagon generates 750, 000 tons hazardous waste/year • Numerous The Military and Pollution • Pentagon generates 750, 000 tons hazardous waste/year • Numerous toxic waste sites • Exempt from most environmental regulations

The Military and Pollution • “The more birds that the [Department of Defense] kill[s], The Military and Pollution • “The more birds that the [Department of Defense] kill[s], the more enjoyment [people] will get from seeing the ones that remain: ‘Bird watchers get more enjoyment spotting a rare bird than they do spotting a common one. ’” – 2002 court summary of the U. S. Defense Department’s argument for exemption from the Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918

The Military • Small arms and rocket propelled grenades • Land mines • Nuclear, The Military • Small arms and rocket propelled grenades • Land mines • Nuclear, chemical and biological weapons

Military Waste • More than 27, 000 toxic hot spots at the pentagon’s 8, Military Waste • More than 27, 000 toxic hot spots at the pentagon’s 8, 500 properties – less than 400 toxic waste dumps have been cleaned up – costs to clean - immense: likely never to be completed • Military exempt from most environmental regulations

Worrisome Trends • • GATT NAFTA CAFTA Other trade agreements Worrisome Trends • • GATT NAFTA CAFTA Other trade agreements

SLAPP/SLAPP-Back • Strategic Lawsuits Against Private Parties/ Countersuits • SLAPPs- designed to harass environmental SLAPP/SLAPP-Back • Strategic Lawsuits Against Private Parties/ Countersuits • SLAPPs- designed to harass environmental groups, deplete their financial resources through threatened or actual litigation

Politics: Bush Administration • Key administrators/committee members/regulators former industry representatives and/or lobbyists • Corporate Politics: Bush Administration • Key administrators/committee members/regulators former industry representatives and/or lobbyists • Corporate profit before public good • Unsound/distorted/suppressed science • Eco-harassment – Criminalizing activists

Bush Administration • • Rollbacks of key environmental laws Lax enforcement of existing laws Bush Administration • • Rollbacks of key environmental laws Lax enforcement of existing laws Huge tax cuts primarily benefit wealthy Federal and state government deficits astronomical – Program and funding cuts

Would You Sign a Petition to Ban Dihydrogen Monoxide? 1. It can cause excessive Would You Sign a Petition to Ban Dihydrogen Monoxide? 1. It can cause excessive sweating and vomiting 2. It is a major component in acid rain 3. It can cause severe burns in its gaseous state 4. It can kill you if accidentally inhaled 5. It contributes to erosion 6. It decreases effectiveness of automobile brakes 7. It has been found in tumors of terminal cancer patients

Environmental Ignorance • A majority of Americans believe that electricity in the U. S. Environmental Ignorance • A majority of Americans believe that electricity in the U. S. is produced in nonpolluting ways – 25% knew that majority (70%) comes from oil, coal and wood • 1/3 assumed that spent nuclear fuel (from our 104 plants) is stored “in a deep underground facility in the West” – Only 17% were aware that it is mostly stored on -site at powerplants pending a long-term solution (30, 000/tons)

Pseudoscientific Beliefs Percentage of Americans who believe “at least to some degree” in these Pseudoscientific Beliefs Percentage of Americans who believe “at least to some degree” in these “phenomena” • • Astrology UFOs Reincarnation Fortune-Telling 1997 37% 30% 25% 14% 1976 17% 24% 9% 4%

Greenwash • Public relations / ad campaigns -Chevron’s “People Do” Campaign, butterflies/refinery -Dupont Freon Greenwash • Public relations / ad campaigns -Chevron’s “People Do” Campaign, butterflies/refinery -Dupont Freon Campaign in 1970’s -Grants to a few scientists who challenge environmental warnings -tobacco ads in 1950’s

Astroturf and Corporate Front Groups • Artificially-created grassroots coalitions • Corporate front groups – Astroturf and Corporate Front Groups • Artificially-created grassroots coalitions • Corporate front groups – The American Council on Science and Health – The Oregon Lands Coalition – National Wilderness Institute – The Foundation for Clean Air Progress

Corporate PR tactics • Invoke poor people as beneficiaries • Characterize opposition as “technophobic, Corporate PR tactics • Invoke poor people as beneficiaries • Characterize opposition as “technophobic, ” anti-science, ” and “against progress” • Portray their products as environmentally beneficial in the absence of (or despite the) evidence

Sponsored Environmental Educational Materials • Corporate-sponsored and supported by a loose coalition of antiregulatory Sponsored Environmental Educational Materials • Corporate-sponsored and supported by a loose coalition of antiregulatory zealots, corporate polluters, lapdog scientists and misguided parents

Sponsored Environmental Education Materials (Examples) • Exxon’s “Energy Cube” -“Gasoline is simply solar power Sponsored Environmental Education Materials (Examples) • Exxon’s “Energy Cube” -“Gasoline is simply solar power hidden in decayed matter” -“Offshore drilling creates reefs for fish” • Pacific Lumber Company -“The Great American Forest is. . . renewable forever”

Sponsored Environmental Education Materials (Examples) • International Paper -“Clearcutting promotes growth of trees that Sponsored Environmental Education Materials (Examples) • International Paper -“Clearcutting promotes growth of trees that require full sunlight and allows efficient site preparation for the next crop” • American Nuclear Society’s “Activities with the Atoms Family” • Dow’s “Chemipalooza”

“Doubt is our product” Brown and Williamson Tobacco Company Memo, 1960 s “Doubt is our product” Brown and Williamson Tobacco Company Memo, 1960 s

Progress and Solutions Progress and Solutions

The “Benefits” of Sterility-Causing Chemicals in the Workplace? 12 September 1977 Dr. Eula Bingham, The “Benefits” of Sterility-Causing Chemicals in the Workplace? 12 September 1977 Dr. Eula Bingham, Assistant Secretary for Occupational Safety and Health [Regarding] worker exposure to DBCP. While involuntary sterility caused by a manufactured chemical may be bad, it is not necessarily so. After all, there are many people who are now paying to have themselves sterilized to assure they will no longer be able to become parents. . . If possible sterility is the main problem, couldn’t workers who were old enough that they no longer wanted to have children accept such positions voluntarily? Or…some [workers] might volunteer for such workposts as an alternative to planned surgery for a vasectomy or tubal ligation, or as a means of getting around religious bans on birth control when they want no more children? Sincerely, Robert K. Phillips, National Peach Council

Environmental Success Story The Montreal Protocol (1987) • Phaseout of chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) by 1996 Environmental Success Story The Montreal Protocol (1987) • Phaseout of chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) by 1996 • Developed in 1920 s; the chief working fluid in refrigerators, aerosol spray cans, insulating foams, and industrial solvents and cleaning agents -1 million tons/year manufactured in 1970 s -major cause of Antarctic and Arctic ozone holes -should disappear by 2060 -current substitute, HCFCs, much less damaging to ozone layer, also to be phased out

The Montreal Protocol • 1980 - 880, 000 tons CFC’s produced worldwide • 1996 The Montreal Protocol • 1980 - 880, 000 tons CFC’s produced worldwide • 1996 - 141, 000 tons • 1996 - all industrialized nations stopped producing CFC’s • Today: Illegal CFC trade, once quite large, starting to taper off • 2010 - rest of world expected to stop

The Montreal Protocol • However, the Bush administration has withdrawn from the Treaty, under The Montreal Protocol • However, the Bush administration has withdrawn from the Treaty, under pressure from agribusiness and chemical lobbyists, who favor increased spraying of the pesticide methyl bromide (the most dangerous ozone-destroying chemical still in use)…. .

Toxic Pollutants: The Basel Convention • The Basel Convention on the Control of Transboundary Toxic Pollutants: The Basel Convention • The Basel Convention on the Control of Transboundary Movements of Hazardous Wastes (designed to control dumping of hazardous wastes from the industrialized world in developing countries)

Toxic Pollutants: The Basel Convention • Ratified by 170 countries • Despite being the Toxic Pollutants: The Basel Convention • Ratified by 170 countries • Despite being the largest producer of toxic pollutants in the world, the U. S. has signed but not ratified this agreement

Persistent Organic Pollutants • UN Environmental Program organizing worldwide phaseout of top 12 through Persistent Organic Pollutants • UN Environmental Program organizing worldwide phaseout of top 12 through the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants – Including DDT, PCBs, and dioxins – US has signed, but not ratified

Lead • American Assn. of Pediatrics now recommends toxic lead be removed from all Lead • American Assn. of Pediatrics now recommends toxic lead be removed from all housing and that all children be tested once during their first two years • 25% of U. S. homes still contain significant amounts of lead-based paint – Cost of removing lead from 4 million seriously affected homes: $28 billion • Cost savings each year thereafter: $43 billion (higher IQs, increased earning power, increased tax revenue, lower health care costs, less crime)

Leaded Gasoline • Banned in Canada in 1990, US in 1996 (after 25 year Leaded Gasoline • Banned in Canada in 1990, US in 1996 (after 25 year phase-out period), EU in 2002, Africa in 2006 – Ban fought by industry for decades – Lead paint banned in U. S. in 1978 after decades of industry push-back • 6 countries still sell small amounts of leaded gasoline: – North Korea, Iraq, Afghanistan, Algeria, Myanmar/Burma, and Yemen (all to phase out by 2013

REACH • Registration, Evaluation, and Authorization of Chemicals • European Treaty requiring companies to REACH • Registration, Evaluation, and Authorization of Chemicals • European Treaty requiring companies to test chemicals already on the market by a set timetable and test new products before putting them on the market

REACH • Cost of evaluations < 1% of chemical industry’s total sales • Economic REACH • Cost of evaluations < 1% of chemical industry’s total sales • Economic analyses show REACH could bring environmental benefits worth € 95 billion over the next 25 years and result in health cost savings of € 50 billion over the next 30 years

Medical Waste • Organizations: – Health Care Without Harm – Green Health Center Movement Medical Waste • Organizations: – Health Care Without Harm – Green Health Center Movement • Hospitals built and operated on more environmentally sosund principles save money (NAS): – Costs recovered more quickly, patients get better sooner, patients’ families happier, medical errors reduced, steaf turnover/absenteeism/workers’ comp claims drop

Solutions Based on the Precautionary Principle “When evidence points toward the potential of an Solutions Based on the Precautionary Principle “When evidence points toward the potential of an activity to cause significant, widespread or irreparable harm to public health or the environment, options for avoiding that harm should be examined and pursued, even though the harm is not yet fully understood or proven”

The Precautionary Principle: Practical Essentials • Give human and environmental health the benefit of The Precautionary Principle: Practical Essentials • Give human and environmental health the benefit of doubt • Include appropriate public participation in the discussion • Gather unbiased, scientific, technological and socioeconomic information • Consider less risky alternatives

The Precautionary Principle • Endorsed by APHA, ANA, CMA, others – Institute of Medicine/National The Precautionary Principle • Endorsed by APHA, ANA, CMA, others – Institute of Medicine/National Research Council have endorsed for FDA policies • Puerto Rico, San Francisco have adopted, among others • Big business, US Chamber of Commerce oppose

The Precautionary Principle • The Precautionary Principle • "All scientific work is incomplete - whether it be observational or experimental. All scientific work is liable to be upset or modified by advancing knowledge. That does not confer upon us a freedom to ignore the knowledge we already have, or to postpone the action it appears to demand at a given time. " (Bradford Hill, 1965)

Contact Information Public Health and Social Justice Website http: //www. phsj. org martindonohoe@phsj. org Contact Information Public Health and Social Justice Website http: //www. phsj. org [email protected] org