It’s official: Breathing dirty air causes lung cancer.
The World Health Organization on Thursday declared air pollution a human carcinogen like tobacco smoke, asbestos and arsenic, calling it a leading cause of cancer deaths globally.
Health experts have known for years that air pollution increases the risk of a wide range of ailments, including respiratory problems and heart disease. Some compounds in the air we breathe, such as diesel exhaust, have already been deemed cancer-causing.
But this is the first time the organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer has classified air pollution in its entirety as a cause of cancer.
The complex mixture of gases, fine particles and other pollutants in the air were labeled “carcinogenic to humans,” the highest of the agency’s four-level classification system.
A panel of experts convened by the WHO’s cancer research arm made the finding after reviewing thousands of…….