The World Health Organization States that Air Pollution Causes Cancer

(from the Seattle Times) Air pollution has long been thought to be connected to lung cancer, but its function as a carcinogen has only been recently affirmed by the World Health Organization.

“The atmosphere many people breathe is becoming polluted with a complex combination of cancer-causing materials,” said Kurt Straif, head of the IARC section that assesses carcinogens. Based on the Seattle Times, he said that the bureau now considers pollution as the most significant environmental carcinogen before secondhand cigarette and cigar smoke.

The IARC formerly declared parts of air pollution, for example, diesel exhaust, to cause cancer, however, this may be actually the very first time that air pollution generally is considered carcinogenic. Personal risk from air pollution is still relatively small, but sources of coverage are frequently unavoidable and prevalent.

“Air pollution is an intricate mix which comprises gases and particulate matter, and [the] IARC said among its main dangers is the fine particles that may be deposited deep inside the lungs of individuals,” The Seattle Times noted.