Pollution damages intelligence

This video from the USA says about itself:

Air Pollution and Health — a Presentation from C. Arden Pope

From British daily The Morning Star:

US medics link pollution to IQ

Monday 20 July 2009

US researchers have released a study that links air pollution exposure before birth to lower IQ scores in childhood, indicating that smog may harm the developing brain.

The evidence, which was published in the August edition of US journal Paediatrics, emerged in a study of 249 children of New York City women who wore backpack air monitors for 48 hours during the last few months of pregnancy.

They lived in mostly low-income communities in northern Manhattan and the South Bronx and had varying levels of exposure to typical kinds of urban air pollution, mostly from car, bus and lorry fumes.

At age five, before starting school, the children were given IQ tests.

Those exposed to the most pollution before birth scored on average four to five points lower than children with less exposure.

Frederica Perera, the study’s lead author and director of the Columbia Centre for Children’s Environmental Health, emphasised that researchers had taken into account other factors that could influence IQ, including second-hand smoke exposure, the home-learning environment and air-pollution exposure after birth and still found a strong influence from prenatal exposure.

Patrick Breysse, an environmental health specialist at Johns Hopkins school of public health, stressed that future research is needed to confirm the new results.

But Mr Breysse said that the findings suggest exposure to air pollution before birth could have the same harmful effects on the developing brain as exposure to lead.

A thick, chocolate-coloured scum floats on the normally clear blue waters of Lake Atitlán, in the southwestern Guatemalan province of Sololá, caused by agricultural fertilisers and untreated sewage from surrounding villages and farm: here.

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