The New York State Department of Health presented a report on the final results of its Tonawanda area cancer study that shows elevated levels of some cancers and birth defects.
The report was presented at a meeting held on Thursday night, Nov. 7, at St. Timothy Lutheran Church on Staley Road after the Dispatch went to press.
The Clean Air Coalition issued a statement Thursday morning that said the New York State Department of Health has found that lung cancer, bladder cancer, and total cancers were elevated among both males and females; esophageal cancer was elevated among males and uterine cancer was elevated among females; in sub-areas, oral cavity cancer was elevated among males, and leukemia among females; pre-term births and heart defects were also elevated, the CAC reported.
In its final report, the DOH included the recommendation to conduct future bio-monitoring of residents, including the taking of blood and urine samples to assess toxic exposure, the CAC said.
According to the Clean Air Coalition, residents are requesting that any further health research must lead to change in public policy and regulation. The CAC said Tonawanda has the highest concentration of air regulated facilities in New York state with more than 53 industrial plants in the neighborhood. According to the Department of Environmental Conservation, the annual average concentration for six air toxics (1,3-butadiene, acetaldehyde, acrolein, benzene, carbon tetrachloride, and formaldehyde), each exceed the health-based annual guideline concentrations, the CAC noted.