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The Courts Medicine Your Rights Online News

After Legal Fight, NCI Researchers Publish Study Linking Diesel Exhaust, Cancer 196

ananyo writes "A landmark study involving U.S. miners that links cancer rates to diesel fume exposure has been published after a seventeen-year legal battle with an industry group. A February 27 Slashdot story had reported that lawyers for the mining industry had sent threatening letters to scientific journals advising them against publishing the study. Initiated in 1998, after the first of many legal delays, the study analyzed exposures in detail for more than 12,000 workers while controlling for smoking and other risk factors. In the end, the scientists found that miners faced a threefold risk of lethal lung cancer, and underground workers who were heavily exposed to diesel fumes faced a fivefold risk. The two concluding papers from the study are available in full."
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After Legal Fight, NCI Researchers Publish Study Linking Diesel Exhaust, Cancer

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  • Re:Emissions (Score:5, Interesting)

    by pla ( 258480 ) on Tuesday March 06, 2012 @10:13AM (#39260459) Journal
    I always wondered why many states require passenger cars to pass through strict emissions tests, however it is perfectly OK to have trains, dump trucks, buses, and large vehicles spew columns of dark black diesel exhaust into the sky....

    As the short answer to that, well-maintained big diesel engines have a useful lifetime measured in millions of miles. Decades of use.

    Believe it or not, (most) emissions rules do apply to those vile soot-belchers (at least, the non-road ones); It will just take literally 50 years to cycle through the worst-of-the-worst currently in service.
  • by elrous0 ( 869638 ) * on Tuesday March 06, 2012 @10:14AM (#39260469)

    Seriously, was there anyone out there in their right mind who thought inhaling diesel fumes (any *any* sort of petrochemical fumes, for that matter) WASN'T bad for you? Okay the cancer thing may be a new twist, but was there really anyone out there arguing for *more* diesel fumes for their workers?

  • Re:How... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Quince alPillan ( 677281 ) on Tuesday March 06, 2012 @10:26AM (#39260587)

    I suspect everyone, except maybe some true psychopaths, eventually feels the need to find a way to excuse their behavior as morally commendable, or at least permissible.

    I think you've hit the nail on the head already. People with psychopathic tendencies are more prevalent than you might think, and they tend to rise quickly within corporate structures if they're highly functioning. Morals are a liability for these people and they do what they can to suppress them if they do have them.

  • Re:How... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by mcgrew ( 92797 ) * on Tuesday March 06, 2012 @11:32AM (#39261313) Homepage Journal

    Lawyers have always been hated. From a book written in 100 AD and translated to English in 1400 AD:

    Then answered one of the lawyers, and said unto him, Master, thus saying thou reproachest us also. And he said, Woe unto you also, ye lawyers! for ye lade men with burdens grievous to be borne, and ye yourselves touch not the burdens with one of your fingers. Woe unto you! for ye build the sepulchres of the prophets, and your fathers killed them. Truly ye bear witness that ye allow the deeds of your fathers: for they indeed killed them, and ye build their sepulchres. Therefore also said the wisdom of God, I will send them prophets and apostles, and some of them they shall slay and persecute: That the blood of all the prophets, which was shed from the foundation of the world, may be required of this generation; From the blood of Abel unto the blood of Zacharias, which perished between the altar and the temple: verily I say unto you, It shall be required of this generation. Woe unto you, lawyers! for ye have taken away the key of knowledge: ye entered not in yourselves, and them that were entering in ye hindered.

    Poor lawyers... they have it rough. I wouldn't be one.

How many NASA managers does it take to screw in a lightbulb? "That's a known problem... don't worry about it."