Sunday, September 16, 2018

Wow, We've Even Managed to Poison Babies in the Womb

Man-made pollution is managing to poison babies before they're even babies.

Scientists have found the first evidence that particles of air pollution travel through pregnant women’s lungs and lodge in their placentas.
Toxic air is already strongly linked to harm in foetuses but how the damage is done is unknown. The new study, involving mothers living in London, UK, revealed sooty particles in the placentas of each of their babies and researchers say it is quite possible the particles entered the foetuses too. 
...The research is being presented Sunday at the European Respiratory Society’s (ERS) international congress in Paris. “This research suggests a possible mechanism of how babies are affected by pollution while being theoretically protected in the womb,” said Prof Mina Gaga, who is ERS president and at the Athens Chest Hospital in Greece. 
“This should raise awareness amongst doctors and the public regarding the harmful effects of air pollution in pregnant women,” she said, noting that harm to foetuses can occur even below current European Union pollution limits. “We need stricter policies for cleaner air to reduce the impact of pollution on health worldwide because we are already seeing a new population of young adults with health issues.” 
Unicef executive director Anthony Lake recently warned of the danger of air pollution to babies: “Not only do pollutants harm babies’ developing lungs, they can permanently damage their developing brains – and, thus, their futures.” 
Separate research, also presented at the ERS congress, found that children with early onset and persistent asthma fared far less well in education than those without the condition. Asthma in children has long been linked to air pollution.


deb said...

the evidence is in, but what can people do?
I am hoping a class action lawsuit on behalf of the human race against Big Oil---but its unlikely
the real solution is for humans to stop polluting, easier said than done
and for people to stop procreating----not a popular theme

The Mound of Sound said...

We seem incapable of rising to the occasion, Deb.Even a modest proposal to raise prices 4 cents a litre at the pump exceeds our tolerance limits. Industries fight back. The premiers fight back. The public fight back.

What's coming down the pike, and I'm thinking it will unfold during the 2020s, will send them all reeling. We'll descend into finger pointing and vilification instead of responsive action.

Perhaps the problem isn't the worst among us but the best among us and their willingness to settle for completely ineffective, gestural measures. They do this and then absolve themselves saying they had no choice. They would never be elected otherwise. In other words they consider themselves incapable of getting into office if they have to act responsibly.

Send in the clowns.

deb said...

your words resonate---very wise assessment.
I agree completely!