Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Study finds poorer health in Appalachian coalfield, especially near mountaintop mines

Health is pooer in Appalachian counties where coal is mined, especially those with mountaintop mining, according to a study published in this month's issue of the American Journal of Public Health.

The study, conducted by the West Virginia University School of Medicine, surveyed residents of Kentucky, Tennessee, Virginia and West Virginia by telephone and "asked questions about how many poor mental and physical health days they had experienced in the previous 30 days," reports Pam Kasey of The State Journal in West Virginia. "Residents of mountaintop mining counties reported, on average, 18 more unhealthy days per year than did the other populations."

“We don’t know exactly how this (mining) affects the air and water,” co-author Michael Hendryx, associate professor in the medical school's Department of Community Medicine, told Kasey. "Hendryx published a controversial study in 2009 that found better health and greater economic prosperity in Appalachian counties with no coal mining than in those with coal mining operations," Kasey notes. "He and a co-author concluded in that study that the costs of illness and premature death outweigh the economic benefits of the coal industry. A National Mining Association-commissioned an analysis of that 2009 study suggested that it had failed to consider the effects of obesity, diabetes and alcohol consumption." (Read more)

1 comment:

Vaporizer said...

These types of the mines are really responsible for the poor health. All the workers which are working on these mines have poor health. And while doing they need to be very careful from all of the gases which arise from that.