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Lung cancer: Air pollution causes more cases worldwide

The number of people smoking has been decreasing for years, yet the number of adenocarcinoma lung cancers is increasing sharply. How can this be possible?

The results of a study by NTU Singapore and Chinese University of Hong Kong have now been published in the journal "Atmospheric Environment". The study suggests that an increase of as little as 0.1 micrograms of soot (black carbon) in the atmosphere increases the global incidence of lung adenocarcinoma (LADC) by 12 percent. Soot is produced, among other things, as a pollutant by particulate matter PM 2.5. Between 1990 and 2012, air pollution with black carbon increased globally by 3.6 micrograms. In the same period, the number of smokers worldwide has decreased by almost 6 per cent. These contrasts suggest that air pollution is directly linked to lung cancer.

This illustrates once again that more needs to be done in the fight for good air. Environmental zones and diesel driving bans are a promising tool for the EU. Unfortunately, there is often not enough control or the rules are still too weak. Recently, the WHO also issued new guidelines for limit values. Will the heads of state bow to them and finally ensure better air? Perhaps we will then see even more driving bans in the future.