Monday, August 20, 2007

4 Million Children Die Each Year from Enviro-Hazards

They always say you can tell everything about a society by how it treats its children:

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by Matthew Sparkes, London, UK on 08. 1.07

Environmental hazards are killing four million children every year. The World Health Organisation claims that problems such as polluted air and water are causing poisonings, acute respiratory infections, diarrhoea diseases and malaria due to thriving mosquito populations in dirty water.

Up to 30% of disease in children can be attributed to environmental factors. "This is something that intuitively we have always recognized, but we never put a number to it," said WHO expert, Jenny Pronczuk.

Children don't even have to come into contact with harmful chemicals during their life for them to have an impact on their health. Any exposure that the mother recieves whilst pregnant can also be passed on, and the effects of that exposure may only emerge in adolescence. Pronczuk said, "For example if you look at lead exposure, the effect will be different if the child was exposed in utero because the lead of the mother goes into the bones of the child."

The fact that this report talks about the effects on children obviously makes for a more emotionally affecting story, and the vastness of the number affected is hard to comprehend. It’s important though, that the WHO look into these issues, because we could be walking into huge medical problems in the future. Our generation may be the first in history that becomes less healthy than the previous. The negative effects of our environment have increased faster than medical science.

4 comments:

2nthru said...

I hear you loud and clear!!!! I have a niece who lost her hair due to thallium poisoning. It came from a nearby coal plant. They have been doing research in the area, and have found out that the amount of auto-immune diseases, cancer rates, and autism rates are off the charts. That's not counting the young girls who have had hysterectomies, either full or partial. ADD and ADHD is running rampant. I never thought too much about it before, but now I am willing to join their plight. I'm onboard. Tell me more!!!

Green Fertility said...

Thanks so much for also sharing the comment on my blog--it will be important for other people to read it!!

Alotta Errata said...

Thanks for this post! This is something I think about quite a great deal. While in undergraduate school, part of my training involved the use of many toxic materials. Of course, at 19 and 20 I was not yet thinking of the consequences it might have a decade or so later. Children for me are still some time off, as I'm juggling a career and a graduate education, but I'm more aware of what I'm allowing myself to come in contact with. I look for organic dairy and foods whenever possible, removed chemicals from my home, do all I can, but I still worry those early years of my career will come back and haunt me and my children :-(

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