Study: Air Pollution Causes Loss In Bone Density

We often discuss how pollution is often discussed without addressing studies showing hundreds of thousands of premature deaths each year due to its health impacts. One of my greatest disagreements with the Trump Administration is its staunchly anti-environmental policies and its opposition to climate change reforms. Indeed, additional rollbacks on environmental protections are being pushed forward by the Administration. The connection between air pollution and death rates for lung cancer, stroke, asthma and other ailments is well established. Now a new study has linked it to the loss of bone density and strength.

The study published Friday by JAMA Network Open found a pronounced impact, particularly in fine particle pollution, on the levels of bone mass.

Co-author Otavio T. Ranzani, researcher at the Barcelona Institute for Global Health, said that their study found that “inhalation of polluting particles could lead to bone mass loss through the oxidative stress and inflammation caused by air pollution.” One such ailment, osteoporosis, affects as many as 55 percent of Americans 50 years of age and older — or some 44 million people.

There has been much discussion of the failing life expectancy rates in the United States. The primary reasons identified by the CDC are (1) drug overdoses, (2) suicide, and (3) liver disease. However, there is a growing body of research that pollution, particularly air pollution, may have a less obvious and more extensive impact than previously thought. The deaths caused by air pollution are rarely attributed to pollution as a cause or contributor. For example, in this study, the impact is bone density loss. When someone dies from a fall, it is attributed to old age and an accident, not the deleterious impact of pollution on the body of the victim. The same is true for people who die from cancer and other causes.

I admit that I have been a long advocate of environmental protections. However, the failure to associate the loss of environmental protections to individual health remains one of the greatest challenges for the environmental and health communities. People still do not readily associate pollution with such personal health risks for themselves and their family members.

Here is the study: JAMA study

40 thoughts on “Study: Air Pollution Causes Loss In Bone Density”

  1. I’m sure there is a temptation for the average person to equate air pollution directly to global warming . . .?

  2. “One of my greatest disagreements with the Trump Administration is its … opposition to climate change reforms.”

    What are those reforms? What empirical evidence do you rely on that shows human activities have a significant effect on climate?

  3. We all breathe the same air. It is in our best interest to make it as healthy as possible.

    My frustrations are as follows:

    We should be combating the de-vegetation of our planet, or at least our country. There have been some efforts to green urban areas, but for the most part, we unthinkingly grade everywhere to maximize runoff, and clear out more and more plants and trees. Our air for the most part comes from the rainforest and marine phytoplankton, neither of which are under our control. But we do have considerable biomass that should be protected.

    We should be looking towards regenerative agriculture and natural sequence farming to try to plant and hold water in the land. Grading, clearing native vegetation, the invasion of alien grasses and perennials, and otherwise maximizing runoff dries out the land, which dries out the air, and invasives burn easier than natives in fire regions. This produces a perfect environment for massive, catastrophic fires. Improving the moisture content of our soil and reclaiming natives should be important.

    Do not fall for programs that claim to help the environment. I have been bitterly disappointed that so many of these turned out to be tax snatch schemes for politicians, with zero improvement or, in some cases, a net negative for the environment.

    Examples:

    CARB in CA, an unelected regulatory body, declared that heavy vehicles prior to 2010 may no longer be registered in the state of CA. This was supposed to help air quality. Retrofitting engines costs tens of thousands of dollars, and just blows them up. Newer compliant engines are not as strong, nor do they last as long. This hit small businesses and livestock haulers with an enormous bill, all at once. The out of state market was glutted with those vehicles. Since they are still on the road, and air floats, this does nothing to improve the planet’s atmosphere. What would have made more sense was to continue to improve technology so that newer vehicles available have all the best pollution prevention. Instead, what we have impacts performance, the vehicles are still on the road, but businesses had to come up with enormous costs, which they either passed on to their customers, or closed. This has been a big thing in rural areas, as water haulers are threatening to close. If your well runs dry, and you aren’t connected to city water, you use a water hauler. Without water, the property that you’ve paid hundreds of thousands of dollars for just became worthless.

    “Road Diets.” People in CA don’t use mass transit. It’s designed for centralized cities, like London or NYC. It is worthless in sprawling areas like most of CA. Therefore, we don’t use it. Plus, who wants to be on a bus in flu season along with homeless people? Ever see all the videos of problems occurring on trains and buses? We like the comfort and personal space of our cars. Mass transit takes hours to get anywhere in CA, and it doesn’t work for the trades. The Democrat philosophy is for the government to be more powerful and intrusive, and to reduce individual rights. They believe the government should be a sort of parent that takes better care of the citizens then they could themselves. They don’t believe the government is just infrastructure. Its goal is social evolution. When Californians wouldn’t take mass transit or ride their bikes, politicians tried force. They came up with Net Zero, a supposed goal for zero traffic fatalities. For there to be no traffic fatalities, traffic cannot exceed a fatal speed. They targeted the most congested areas in the test zone, and then they took away more lanes. They turned them into empty bike lanes no one used, or they erected concrete barriers or K rails. This slowed everyone to a crawl, but they didn’t take mass transit, because it still doesn’t work in this kind of area. Instead of reducing pollution, it created more of it, as cars idled for hours. It took people aware from their homes and families for hours longer. Clogged up fire trucks and ambulances and police. Sent furious drivers speeding through residential areas, looking for a way out, any way out, of this traffic disasters.

    There is a foundational flaw in how our environmental regulations are created. They are written by bureaucrats who are not personally affected, and don’t care about those who are personally affected.

    This is how environmental regulations and policies should be written:

    1. Is it needed
    2. Avoid or reduce negative impact to business owners and residents
    3. Trail period beta test in targeted area, and then adjust as needed
    4. Are we better off? Yes, continue. No, change or remove.

    The bureaucrats who write these regulations could care less if it is expensive or undoable for people. Here in CA, it takes forever, deep footings, an architect, multiple inspections, and many thousands of dollars in permit fees to put up a horse shelter. A prefab barn costs as much as a house with all the permit fees and costs. Country people can’t do this. Their lives are not improved by this.

    1. forest is returning to much of western europe and japan, as farmland is abandoned and small towns empty out into cities. this has happened in some places in the US too. Contrast the population decline in the first world, to population glut in the third, where they raze mile after mile of rain forest, it’s not a promising trend in either direction, unfortunately, but it’s not uniform deforestation worldwide, per se.

      it’s true that urban sprawl and massive parking lots blight much of our geography in America for sure, but that can be fixed with more intelligent zoning laws.

      study the “new urbanism” for more information

      1. That’s true.

        I’ll have to check out “new urbanism.” I’m aware of forestry projects in urban areas. Is it related?

        It has been a big problem in CA where native chaparral has either been razed, or choked with highly flammable invasive grasses and perennials. If you stand at the bottom of a native, uncontaminated chaparral hillside, during the pouring rain, almost nothing runs off the slope. Our natives have evolved to hoard every drop of moisture and bank it. Those deep root systems stabilize hillsides.

        Almost everywhere you look, now, are invasives, including some tumbleweed species that act like rolling fire starters. Our fire season historically would have a hundred years between them. Really, the only natural source of fire is lightening. Dry lightening is quite rare out here, and when it does occur, is during the rainy season when any fire would normally be put out soon.

        Almost all of our fires, and Australia’s too, are human caused, either accidental or on purpose. Arson, car accidents, sparking cars, power line malfunctions, cigarettes. The frequency is coming so quickly that natives don’t have the time they need to reestablish from crowns. They are getting killed. It’s hard to fire native chaparral but it’s a beast to get out. The invasive alien grasses act like tinder. As the natives die off from too many fires too close together, that invasive tinder builds up more and more. Now, entire hills and mountains are covered in invasive grass, that used to be chaparral. That leads to erosion, mud slides in the rainy season, and it dries out the land and the air. That leads to more and worse fires. The cycle will eventually lead to desertification if we don’t stop it.

        The water needs to be planted deep in the ground. We need our native plants back. I have absolutely no idea how to get rid of the invasives. Once established, grasses and brooms seem to be ubiquitous.

        I do have a soft spot for the naturalized pepper trees, though, although they are too flammable.

      2. I looked up “new urbanism” and love this idea of brining more nature into cities, as well as creating environments conducive to being outside. Thanks so much for referring me to this planning term.

        People from the suburbs or city comes to our place, try to wear flippies around the horses, and are physically uncomfortable being outside. In the dirt. It snows and too many kids are content to watch it through the windows instead of playing in it. More and more people are only comfortable inside watching screens, pretending to do adventures instead of going outside and actually doing them.

    2. More on Road Diets:

      https://kfiam640.iheart.com/content/2019-03-06-the-mar-vista-road-diet-is-a-failure/

      The Mayor of Paradise, CA, site of a deadly forest fire, claimed that he didn’t think the road diet in his town mattered. He didn’t think any town could evacuate every soul all at once. But, use common sense. What did narrowing a 4 lane road to a 2 lane road do to evacuation times, when the town was on fire? Did it help, or did it slow it down?

      Mind you, Paradise is where a woman burned to death holding her two great grandchildren, unable to escape on foot due to medical reasons, while on the phone with her husband. Her husband could not get to them because of the traffic. Police would not let others hike to the house because they were under orders not to let people go back, as it only would add to the number that firemen had to rescue. She thought throwing wet towels over the kids would save them. It didn’t.

      Lessons: Analyze escape routes for mountain towns. Make improvements to roads. Abolish Road Diets. I emphatically believe that people should be allowed into fire zones at their own risk if they are going to save people. The fire department couldn’t get to the kids in time. They saved as many as they could. The problem is that if a fireman sees a human being, they will save the person, and abandon the structure, hillside, or whatever. Letting people in is prevented to avoid firemen abandoning putting out fires to save people who aren’t supposed to be there. But they can’t be everywhere at once. People should be allowed in to get their families out, but be warned that they probably can’t get help if they need it.

      https://kfiam640.iheart.com/content/2018-11-21-paradise-narrowed-main-route-in-road-diet-plan-years-ago/

      “The infamous “road diet” has been a pain in the butt for many residents of Southern California who are already plagued by horrible traffic.

      In the past, the road diet has been more of a nuisance than a help for commuter safety as emergency services struggle to get to accidents during gridlock on roads that have suffered from the “diet.” And now, the place that could be the ultimate proof of a road diet failure is Paradise.

      Around four years ago, the city decided to narrow a portion of the main road through the bustling downtown from four lanes down to two in an effort to boost commerce and promote traffic and pedestrian safety.

      Records show two other roads were also narrowed.

      The so-called Skyway “road diet” slowed traffic, and a local civic group donated benches and landscaping to beautify the zone.

      However the Skyway became the only route open for people to escape the Camp Fire as it barreled though the town at eight football fields per minute on November 8.

      Up to 27,000 residents tried to escape the worst wildfire in California history, finding themselves stuck in gridlock traffic with some even perishing in their vehicles as the flames swallowed them.

      Mayor Jody Jones said Tuesday that it was not clear if the narrowing of Skyway caused the long delays.

      “I don’t believe that it really mattered,” Jones said. “I don’t think there’s any town in the world prepared with a roadway infrastructure that could evacuate their entire town all at once. They’re just not built to do that.”

      To make it more friendly to shoppers, six sets of curb cutouts encroach on two lanes once dedicated to traffic as part of the Skyway project plans. “

      1. It’s very carbon efficient source of energy, but that doesn’t stop the Democrats from slow-rolling and obstructing its development. which belies their supposed concern over global warming, etc.

        As i proved here with solid citations months ago.

    1. David – you should be aware of how toxic tanneries are in India. Chromium tanneries contaminate nearby crop fields and poison workers and nearby farmers. This toxic runoff is quite common, and had serious health effects in the area that can impact other studies, as well.

      If your leather is vegetable tanned, it will be stiff and take a while to break in. But it will last a long time. Great saddles and bridles are made from vegetable tanned leathers, and they can last for generations. My husband has a McClellan saddle that’s over a hundred years old. (It appears to have been created to be as uncomfortable to the rider as possible. Display only.) Such leathers get a patina, and age beautifully.

      Chromium tanned leathers are buttery soft at purchase, and often come in vibrant colors. If advertising brags about how soft the feel is, it’s been chemically tanned, and was toxic to the workers to make. It will also break down over time. Instead of getting more beautiful with age, it will crack and lose integrity.

      While Chromium tanning is a lot cheaper than the far longer vegetable tanning process, some of these leather goods are extremely expensive brands. Some of the most expensive shoes you can buy are Chromium leather. It’s actually a marketing point as the leather is so soft.

      https://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/inpictures/2013/10/kanpur-a-city-being-killed-by-pollution-2013103102518868628.html

      https://www.indiatoday.in/fyi/story/the-toxic-cost-of-kanpurs-leather-industry-329990-2016-07-19

      Whatever good or service we buy, we are voting for the entire process with our dollars. That’s true of the fashion we wear, the food we eat, and the car we drive. The nail salon industry is a notoriously toxic place where workers earn pittance. I think one of the good trends in our society is that more consumers are interested in learning about the process, and seeking better alternatives.

      That’s also why I buy organic produce as often as possible. There are a lot of pickers out here in CA, and many pregnant women pickers have miscarriages or birth defects. There were a lot of articles written about it years ago. I buy organic because I don’t want to pay for produce that was grown by exposing human beings to toxins.

  4. Good reason not live in or near cities which are not only major polluters but heat sinks and crime so three strikes they are out!

    1. Worst is to live directly downwind of a coal-fired electric power plant. Those are usually out in the countryside now.

  5. 26,000 Lives Saved From Closing Coal Plants

    The human toll from coal-fired pollution in America has been laid bare by a study that has found more than 26,000 lives were saved in the US in just a decade due to the shift from coal to gas for electricity generation.

    The shutdown of scores of coal power facilities across the US has reduced the toxic brew of pollutants suffered by nearby communities, cutting deaths from associated health problems such as heart disease and respiratory issues, the research found.

    An estimated 26,610 lives were saved in the US by the shift away from coal between 2005 and 2016, according to the University of California study published in Nature Sustainability.

    The coal sector has struggled in recent years, with 334 generating units taken offline during the period analyzed in the study. A cheap glut of natural gas has displaced coal, with 612 gas-fired units coming online during this time.

    As a result, more than 300m tons of planet-heating carbon dioxide has been saved, while levels of nitrogen dioxide and sulfur dioxide, emitted by coal plants and linked to irritations of the nose and throat, dropped by 60% and 80%, respectively.

    “When you turn coal units off you see deaths go down. It’s something we can see in a tangible way,” said Jennifer Burney, a University of California academic who authored the study. “There is a cost to coal beyond the economics. We have to think carefully about where plants are sited, as well as how to reduce their pollutants.”

    Edited from: “Shutdown Of U.S. Coal Facilities Saved Over 26,000 Lives”

    Today’s The Guardian

    1. Seth:

      Fossil fuels improved the life expectancy of people who used to freeze to death in winter. Before fossil fuels, people cut down trees to burn, or used animal dung.

      On the one hand, fossil fuels were a great leap forward in health and life expectancy.

      Of course we should always be looking for cleaner and new sources of energy. By definition, fossil fuels are finite. As has been pointed out, some pollute more than others. Carbon capture technology improved coal burning. But burning anything produces pollutants.

      I am keenly interested in the latest nuclear technology, which is a complete reversal for me.

      When planning energy, it needs to be affordable. Don’t put people in the position of having to choose between eating, or heating or cooling their homes, or we’ll go back to shortened life expectancy. I have been very disappointed in solar and wind energy as a utility source, although there is still scope for individual power generation. On the whole, they are extremely expensive, require fossil fuels to create, in the case of solar cells their creation is associated with toxic pollution. Depending on the location, decommissioning a single wind turbine can cost a quarter to a half million dollars. And they don’t last that long. That’s an expense I only recently heard about.

      That’s why when CA auto enrolled many of us in the clean power alliance, our electric bill doubled. That wasn’t 100% wind and solar. It just increased the percentage. But it doubled electricity costs. It was unaffordable.

      Plus, I don’t want a bunch of junk wind turbines clogging up landfills.

      https://www.energycentral.com/news/retiring-worn-out-wind-turbines-could-cost-billions-nobody-has

      Don’t be so keen to get rid of fossil fuels until there is a clean, reliable, affordable alternative. I think nuclear is a possible option.

  6. The connection between air pollution and death rates for lung cancer, stroke, asthma and other ailments is well established. Now a new study has linked it to the loss of bone density and strength.

    The connection between reliance on pre-industrial technology and death rates is also well-established. There are always trade-offs, professor. Economists and businessmen understand this even if lawyers never will.

    1. Absurd, we dont have to ‘trade-off’ public health. That’s just a stupid view put out by lobbyists for companies that don’t want to bother with pollution control equipment.

      1. Peter, you know nothing. There are costs and benefits incorporated within any type of productive activity. You devote more effort and more resources over here, you have to devote less over there. Technology isn’t fixed and neither is joint-factor productivity, of course.

        1. Tabby, we dont need to trade-off. That’s just old, Reagan era thinking promoted by Republican lobbyists. The idea seems to be that we ‘can’t afford a clean environment’. That line of thought is sheer nonsense!

          There’s no logical reason to rollback EPA standards when the economy is expanding like it is. There’s no battery of statistics to show that our economy has suffered because of EPA standards.

          1. Tabby, we dont need to trade-off. That’s just old, Reagan era thinking promoted by Republican lobbyists.

            No, that’s an observation incorporated into the fundamentals of microeconomics, Peter.

            1. Tabby, show me a recent study from a mainstream source revealing that environmental regulations have been a ‘drag on the economy’.

              But we’re 10 years into an economic expansion so finding data like that might be difficult.

              1. Seth:

                Copied and pasted from my earlier comment:

                CARB in CA, an unelected regulatory body, declared that heavy vehicles prior to 2010 may no longer be registered in the state of CA. This was supposed to help air quality. Retrofitting engines costs tens of thousands of dollars, and just blows them up. Newer compliant engines are not as strong, nor do they last as long. This hit small businesses and livestock haulers with an enormous bill, all at once. The out of state market was glutted with those vehicles. Since they are still on the road, and air floats, this does nothing to improve the planet’s atmosphere. What would have made more sense was to continue to improve technology so that newer vehicles available have all the best pollution prevention. Instead, what we have impacts performance, the vehicles are still on the road, but businesses had to come up with enormous costs, which they either passed on to their customers, or closed. This has been a big thing in rural areas, as water haulers are threatening to close. If your well runs dry, and you aren’t connected to city water, you use a water hauler. Without water, the property that you’ve paid hundreds of thousands of dollars for just became worthless.

                “Road Diets.” People in CA don’t use mass transit. It’s designed for centralized cities, like London or NYC. It is worthless in sprawling areas like most of CA. Therefore, we don’t use it. Plus, who wants to be on a bus in flu season along with homeless people? Ever see all the videos of problems occurring on trains and buses? We like the comfort and personal space of our cars. Mass transit takes hours to get anywhere in CA, and it doesn’t work for the trades. The Democrat philosophy is for the government to be more powerful and intrusive, and to reduce individual rights. They believe the government should be a sort of parent that takes better care of the citizens then they could themselves. They don’t believe the government is just infrastructure. Its goal is social evolution. When Californians wouldn’t take mass transit or ride their bikes, politicians tried force. They came up with Net Zero, a supposed goal for zero traffic fatalities. For there to be no traffic fatalities, traffic cannot exceed a fatal speed. They targeted the most congested areas in the test zone, and then they took away more lanes. They turned them into empty bike lanes no one used, or they erected concrete barriers or K rails. This slowed everyone to a crawl, but they didn’t take mass transit, because it still doesn’t work in this kind of area. Instead of reducing pollution, it created more of it, as cars idled for hours. It took people aware from their homes and families for hours longer. Clogged up fire trucks and ambulances and police. Sent furious drivers speeding through residential areas, looking for a way out, any way out, of this traffic disasters.

                Just because some bureaucrat or politician claims that something is good for the environment, doesn’t make it so.

          2. “we ‘can’t afford a clean environment’.” That’s a straw man argument.

            If we drive the cost of electricity up too high, because we must “do something” then people will burn trees and we’ll be worse off.

            Blocking nuclear energy doesn’t make sense, as it has lower emissions than solar or wind. (See how France’s emission increased when it moved away from nuclear towards wind and solar.)

            We are not better off if we’re all back to freezing in winter or unable to get farther than we can walk. We are not better off if we can no longer use fossil fuel derivatives, like keyboards, computers, screens, tires, tennis rackets, asphalt, medical tubing, medical devices, medicines, etc.

            There must be a benefit, and it must be affordable. Too many people don’t seem to care about the price, but that means you don’t care when people can’t afford it. But, but, why do you care that you’re shivering and hungry? Don’t you care about the environment?

      2. Seth:

        Out where I live, I have gotten many ads for wood burning pellet stoves, specifically marketed to combat the rising cost of energy. As solar and wind percentages go up, so do energy costs. They are marketing wood burning (or preindustrial methods) as an alternative.

        How are we better off if we resort back to burning wood to heat our homes, producing more smoke than otherwise, and getting rid of more trees? We’re not.

        The objective isn’t to get rid of fossil fuels. The objective is to improve air quality and protect our oxygen producers/carbon sequesters (trees). If there was a technology that turned fossil fuels into zero emission, then you wouldn’t care about using fossil fuels. Eventually, fossil fuels will be replaced or run out. If your goal is just to get rid of them regardless of the alternative, then you’re going to to denude the country of trees and/or impoverish people.

        Remember, the goal is cleaner air, Replacing fossil fuels is not a goal, but a step.

  7. Yea…because the air quality in America is so damn bad. Some of your readers remember way back pilgrim…when it actually was. We worked in it, smelled it, drove through it…that’s not today’s air quality Sir. Alarmism seems strange coming from you.

  8. Well you can be proud of America and the Trump Administration. For the last 35 years, “air pollution”, has been significantly reduced in the USA. This continues with the growth of natural gas and clean coal, in addition to limited solar and wind (despite the significant cost to the environment with mineral extraction/mining and wind farms that kill millions of birds and wildlife) . Ultimately, the implementation of smart nuclear power, which liberals fight tooth and nail, would be the most clean possibility we have right now. The liberal plan to punish the work America has done on energy is frightening.

    Secondly, i find it offensive that smart people continue to let themselves be used as tools in liberal arguments. NO ONE can control the world environment and the absurd terminology of “climate change” needs to be embarrassed out of you. The Left uses this term to encapsulate all issues because they want to are fascists who want to take away our liberty and control all economies and policies, despite the fact that we know the Left impovershes its people and ruins lives (see Venezuela, Italy, China, North Korea, etc). THe climate has changed for eons, with and without human interference. There have been heating periods and cooling periods!

    Finally, your argument is full of logical fallacies. To create linkages between bone-density and pollution, as if it is the driving force of bone density loss, is almost absurd. There are multiple factors (diet, exercise, drug use, etc), as well as over-diagnosis, and many that are obviously more impactful than a declining air pollution. I hate people using such absurd language as Climate Change to try to control people.

    1. SGB, your logging all these lies while apocalyptic fires burn Australia. Which makes you the most clueless of commenters.

  9. Pollution is a factor, especially in situations of undernutrition, as may be the case for the participants in this study, but it is one of many contributing factors.

    The study was done in India, for clarity’s sake. Almost half of the study’s participants did not have formal education, and almost half worked in unskilled manual jobs. Over half used biomass fuel for cooking, that is, they used dried cow dung, wood or grass. Poverty is already associated with osteoporosis.

    Insufficient magnesium and vitamin C intake, not to mention inadequate intake of calcium and vitamin D and other minerals, can be detrimental to bone health. India has a problem with early-onset menopause, very possibly associated with undernutrition. (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5320842/) Early menopause is also associated with osteoporosis. I wonder how many of the female participants (46% were women in the study) were also going through early menopause. Pollution could be a factor in that, too, since whatever poor nutrition is already present, a subset is being used additionally by the body to detoxify the pollutants. Pollution would add an extra strain on an already strained system.

    While oxidative stress does play a role in bone health, there are many confounding factors beyond indoor and outdoor air quality that would be difficult to tease apart (stress can even promote oxidative stress–and being in poverty is stressful). Undernutrition and high stress can lead to an overload of oxidative stress because with undernutrition the body would have inadequate means (e.g., by having plenty of antioxidants) to neutralize the increased production of reactive oxygen species that contribute to oxidative stress.

  10. For those who live off those cigarettes I say: guns are quicker. Shoot yourself in the head and stop polluting the air that others have to breathe. Smokers are dumb. Parents who encourage their brats to smoke or vape need to be shot.

    1. Smokers are a huge burden on society. They not only spread their dirt around in the air for others to breath but when they get cancer or heart disease the rest of us have to pay for their insurance and health costs. Put smokers in a different field of people in insurance plans. My rates should not go up by having them in my policy group. Same with medicare. Make em pay more for Part B and have a separate catagory for Part DumbitShays. (pig latin for Dumb sh__s.)

  11. The sample was pulled entirely from a population of mostly poor peasants in peri-urban India; 58% of whom used biomass (wood, dung, straw, peat) for cooking. 48.5% have no formal education. 25% are smokers.

    I had to look up “peri-urban”. It means on the outskirts of an urban area.
    The fact they are poor implies they live in squalid, poorly ventilated structures. That almost 60% rely on biomass for cooking means much of the pollution they are exposed to is INDOOR air pollution in their homes – something most of America’s poor do not experience.

    Ironically, the people in America who do experience SOME indoor pollution are often the 1%ers. People like TV lawyers, columnists, and academics who like to jet around the world giving lectures in the Pacific Islands, Argentina, and Alaska and who like to moralize about how important the environment is. Those sorts of folks like to maintain cabins in the mountains or around lakes as second homes. There, they build a fire in the fireplace and expose themselves to indoor pollution as they pretend they are “roughing it” for a couple of days to relax and unwind after all of the travel, writing, lecturing, and moralizing.

    Yes, indoor air pollution is a problem for the 2 billion people in the world living on $2 per day. The solution is economic development to increase education and raise living standards.

    You happen to live in America, not India. The air here has never been cleaner any time in your life.
    https://www.epa.gov/air-trends/air-quality-national-summary

  12. I demand that everyone in Washington, D.C. bike to work. This includes those in the government suburbs.

  13. “Co-author Otavio T. Ranzani, researcher at the Barcelona Institute for Global Health, said that their study found that “inhalation of polluting particles could lead to bone mass loss through the oxidative stress and inflammation caused by air pollution.” One such ailment, osteoporosis, affects as many as 55 percent of Americans 50 years of age and older — or some 44 million people.”
    ***********
    You ought to translate this into Mandarin since their CO2 emissions are double ours. Btw “could lead” is quite different than “does lead.” “Could” is the word of the carney barker: “You could win a kewpie doll with one good ring toss!” But we all know you never will.

    1. Yes, it is weird that JT falls for these “studies” so easily. My dad is the first one in our family tree to reach the age of 80. He is now 86 so things in my personal sphere are looking up.

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