As environmental health advocates call on Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Lisa Jackson to release a long-awaited report on the health impact of dioxins, an analysis by Facing South finds that Southern communities bear a disproportionate burden of industrial dioxin pollution.
A class of toxic chemicals that persist in the environment and build up in the food chain, dioxins have been linked to a host of health problems including immune-system damage, hormone disruption and cancer -- and at very low levels of exposure. Environmental dioxin pollution has been declining since the 1970s, but the EPA says current exposure levels "remain a concern."
That's why the agency has undertaken a reassessment of the chemicals' effects on human health. The EPA has said it would release the non-cancer portion of the reassessment this month, with the cancer portion to follow "as expeditiously as possible." The reassessment has been delayed for decades amid political pressure from industry.
READ MORE: http://www.southernstudies.org/2012/01/dumping-dioxin-on-dixie.html