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"Study sees parking lot dust as a cancer risk"

Medical Research Dust Cancer risk 2010

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#1 sierraleone


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Posted 12 January 2010 - 09:07 PM



Chemicals in a cancer-causing substance used to seal pavement, parking lots and driveways across the U.S. are showing up at alarming levels in dust in homes, prompting concerns about the potential health effects of long-term exposure, a new study shows.

The substance is coal tar sealant, a waste product of steel manufacturing that is used to protect pavement and asphalt against cracking and water damage, and to impart a nice dark sheen. It is applied most heavily east of the Rockies but is used in all 50 states.

But scientists with the U.S. Geological Survey say the sealant — one of two types commonly used in the U.S. — doesn’t stay put. It slowly wears off and is tracked into homes on the shoes of residents.
Taken with previous studies indicating that the chemicals contaminate waterways, where they have been shown to harm insects and tadpoles, the finding raises serious questions about the advisability of using coal tar as a sealant, the scientists say.
The scientists’ published their research Monday in the journal Environmental Science & Technology. The research, which examined both parking lot dust and dust tracked into homes, focused on a class of chemicals known as polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, or PAHs, which are a significant component of coal tar.
Coal tar is known to cause cancer in humans. That finding dates to the 1770s, when chimney sweeps in London were found to have high levels of scrotal cancer. Late the next century, it was associated with skin cancers among creosote workers. PAHs themselves are listed by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency as a probable human carcinogen, based on laboratory studies in which they caused cancer in animals.
The new U.S.G.S. study compared house dust from 23 ground-floor apartments in Austin — 11 with coal tar-sealed parking lots and 12 coated with other substances, or not sealed at all. The study found that dust in the apartments next to the coal-tar-sealed lots had PAH pollution levels 25 times higher, on average, than the other lots.
Although adults are at risk from toxic pollutants in house dust, young children are especially vulnerable, studies have shown. That’s because they have a higher metabolic rate, they get a bigger dose per pound of body weight, their organs are still developing and they play on or near floors where carpets concentrate and retain toxics. Stanford University researchers have recorded children putting their hands on contaminated surfaces, such as floors, and then into their mouths up to 60 times an hour.
The most dangerous coal tar component — a PAH chemical called benzo[a]pyrene – was found in driveway dust at two suburban single family homes at thousands of times the level that would trigger a cleanup at a toxic-waste site.
But a spokeswoman for a trade group of companies that apply the coal tar sealants said research has not been comprehensive enough to justify such bans. Anne P. LeHuray, director of the Pavement Coatings Technology Council, said people who advocate bans are looking for a “magic bullet” to solve a complicated problem.

She points out that cancer-causing chemicals contained in the pavement sealants also get into cities and suburbs from a number of other sources, including motor oil, vehicle exhaust and tires.

“Right now the research is not that convincing that this is that important a source of PAHs relative to all the other sources that are out there,” LeHuray said. “They didn’t look at all the potential sources.”

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#2 Mooky



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Posted 13 January 2010 - 10:51 PM


#3 gsmonks


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Posted 14 January 2010 - 11:33 AM

This is old news. Insurance companies have been making cancer maps for many years. And parking lots have always been known to produce/harbour carcinogens. People who live at intersections pay higher insurance because cars brake at intersections, brakes pads use asbestos . . .

If you look at a cancer map you'll see that cancer is not random. Insurance companies have been using them for years.

Too bad joe general public seems not to know about them.
Capitalism is a pyramid scheme run by the 1%.

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