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Joseph J. Mangano responds

to Dr. Alvin D. Jackson's (Ohio director of health) article
State reacts to Lake County cancer stats
Cleveland Plain Dealer

Sunday, August 16, 2009

On April 9, 2009, Joseph J. Mangano published a letter in the Cleveland Plain Dealer suggesting that the Health threat of Perry nuclear power plant should be carefully studied before its license is extended (click here to read). Dr. Jackson responded, claiming emissions were below federal limits and that cancer rates are not higher around Perry. Fortunately, the Cleveland Plain Dealer gave Mr. Mangano an opportunity to respond. This is Mr. Mangano's response. (Click here to read the article at the Cleveland Plain Dealer)

The fact that radioactive emissions from the Perry nuclear plant are below federally permitted limits does not necessarily mean they are harmless.

There are at least six types of cancer not mentioned by Dr. Jackson in which the Lake County 2001-2005 incidence ranks among the highest 20 of the 88 Ohio counties: female breast cancer in situ (38.5 in Lake; 27.9 in Ohio); stomach cancer (7.4 in Lake; 6 in Ohio); bladder cancer (24.3 in Lake; 21.7 in Ohio); non-Hodgkin lymphoma (21.3 in Lake; 19.1 in Ohio; cancer of the ovary (13.4 in Lake; 12.3 in Ohio; and cancer of the esophagus (6.2 in Lake; 5.4 in Ohio).

The introduction of cancer-causing radiation from the Perry plant into the environment should be considered as one potential reason why these cancer death rates are high, and health officials should conduct studies to examine this possibility.

Sources for Mangano's position: U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, www.statecancerprofiles.cancer.gov

Joseph J. Mangano MPH MBA is Executive Director of the Radiation and Public Health Project, a research and education group based in New York.

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