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Restricting vehicle use, reducing coal combustion and closing some pollution-emitting factories are just a few of the measures taken during the 2008 Olympic Games to reduce pollution. Continuing these practices could help China further cut the risk of lung cancer in its citizens

Staci Simonich, study leader and an associate professor of chemistry and environmental toxicology at Oregon State University, along with Yuling Jia, study co-author and a postdoctoral research associate at Oregon State University, and a team of researchers, discovered that the air pollution control measures placed in Beijing for the 2008 Olympic Games could reduce the number of lifetime cases of lung cancer by 10,000 if continued.  

China has become heavily polluted due to the growing population, industrialization, biomass burning and the use of fossil fuels. In Beijing, for example, the number of vehicles increases by 13 percent every year. Approximately 300,000 people die in China annually due to lung cancer and heart disease associated with air pollution. In Beijing alone, the current level of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) would lead to 21,200 lifetime cases of lung cancer. 

In this study, researchers examined the carcinogenic impact and chemical composition of PAH pollutants, which is a group of compounds that come from most types of combustion, including car exhaust and coal-burning power plants.  

PAHs are common pollutants found in China, but other teams of scientists from Oregon State University have found that the PAH levels are so high in some Asian nations that the compounds are traveling across the Pacific Ocean to the United States.  

With growing concerns regarding citizens in China and other Asian nations as well as the United States, the Oregon State University researchers studied the effects the air pollution control measures were having, and concluded that the continuous use of these measures would have a significant impact on the overall risk of lung cancer in citizens. 

"PAH pollution was definitely reduced by the actions China took during the 2008 Olympics, such as restricting vehicle use, decreasing coal combustion and closing some pollution-emitting factories," said Simonich. "That's a positive step, and it shows that if such steps were continued it could lead to a significant reduction in cancer risk from these types of pollutants." 

If continued, the air pollution control measures could cut Beijing's number of lifetime lung cancer risk by almost half, reducing the total by 10,000.  

"This is definitely a health concern and one that deserves attention in China by both the government and the public," said Jia. 

This study was published in Environmental Health Perspectives.

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By rudolphna on 2/8/2011 10:00:04 AM , Rating: 3
Reducing pollutants and carcinogens in the air reduces lung cancer! This has never been known before, and is therefor huge important news that noone could have possibly ever figured out by themselves.

/sarcasm off

RE: surprise!
By piroroadkill on 2/8/2011 10:18:32 AM , Rating: 2
Yeah, this is absurdly obvious.

RE: surprise!
By MrTeal on 2/8/2011 10:27:25 AM , Rating: 1
Shutting down factories and cutting back on motor vehicle use for the Olympics is one thing. Continuing those measures is entirely another. The Chinese lost billions in revenue from the factory closures during the games. Does anyone actually think that the Chinese government is going make those permanent just to save 10,000 people?

RE: surprise!
By kattanna on 2/8/2011 11:50:58 AM , Rating: 2
since more then 10,000 people could be lost by a rounding error in china, i think not.

RE: surprise!
By FITCamaro on 2/8/2011 12:05:16 PM , Rating: 2
The issue I have is that liberals in America try to make the case that conservatives want us to have absolutely no pollution controls like China does.

Our argument is that we have enough. Air is clean for the most part in America based off laws we've had for a few decades. We don't need ever stronger laws that start to hurt other measures like emissions controls for autos have started to do. Gas mileage in cars has gone down because of ever more stringent emissions controls.

RE: surprise!
By HrilL on 2/8/2011 1:14:56 PM , Rating: 2
I'm fine with OUR current laws but as someone on the west coast I think China needs to stop polluting us. California has some of the most restrictive laws and our air quality never seems to get much better. This was years ago and China and Asia have been polluting even more since.

RE: surprise!
By FITCamaro on 2/8/2011 6:35:06 PM , Rating: 2
That's because the geography of Commifornia. You have mountains to the east which block things from being blown away.

I've been to Commifornia and the air quality was fine to me.

What about cigarettes?
By mmcdonalataocdotgov on 2/8/2011 11:17:06 AM , Rating: 1
There are more smokers in China than there are people in the US (300 million). They might could maybe start there.

RE: What about cigarettes?
By chick0n on 2/8/2011 11:37:23 AM , Rating: 2
The problem is that they are not "afraid" of the consequences. Most people regret only when they are on the 4th stage of cancer, lying on bed suffering from serious pain that no pain killer can stop (cuz at last stage cancer cell gets into your nerves so pain killers won't work)

RE: What about cigarettes?
By HrilL on 2/8/2011 1:17:52 PM , Rating: 2
In China you won't make it that far. Health care isn't really great or for everyone. You're much more likely to just die. Its cheaper to let people die then to keep them on machines for 2-3 more months when all they can do is lie they are wait to die. at 80K+ a day. Part of the reason health care is so high here is because families just won't let their loved ones die.

RE: What about cigarettes?
By FITCamaro on 2/8/2011 6:36:49 PM , Rating: 2
Part of the reason health care is so high here is because families just won't let their loved ones die.

Damn them....

For the record though, if I was to get a tattoo, it would be one on my chest that said "DO NOT RESUSCITATE"

RE: What about cigarettes?
By lyeoh on 2/10/2011 9:49:00 AM , Rating: 2
Why? If their people lived longer wouldn't they have the "aging population" problem that most of the "Western nations" keep worrying about?

All they have to do is just increase the tobacco taxes (and claim to be doing it to discourage smoking) till it makes overall economic sense.

It's not a bug, it's a feature.

"I f***ing cannot play Halo 2 multiplayer. I cannot do it." -- Bungie Technical Lead Chris Butcher

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