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Tue May 17, 2016, 10:40 AM

Study Links Fracking to Infertility, Miscarriages, Birth Defects (US News And World Report)

Study Links Fracking to Infertility, Miscarriages, Birth Defects: The controversial method of oil and gas development behind the U.S. energy boom may pose potent risks to children and pregnant women.


Alan Neuhauser

A new study links shale oil and gas development to a host of developmental and reproductive health risks, and says the processes involved – including hydraulic fracturing, or fracking – pose a particularly potent threat to what researchers called "our most vulnerable population."

“Children, developing fetuses, they’re especially vulnerable to environmental factors,” says Ellen Webb, the study's lead author and an energy program associate at the Center for Environmental Health. “We really need to be concerned about the impacts for these future generations.”

The risks from exposure to toxic chemicals, heavy metals and radioactive materials include a parent's worst nightmares: “infertility, miscarriage or spontaneous abortion, impaired fetal growth, and LBW,” the study found, referring to low birth weight. The report also sounded an alarm about possible birth defects and long-term chronic conditions the, symptoms for which may not emerge for years.

[READ: Toxic Chemicals and Carcinogens Skyrocket Near Fracking Sites, Study Says]

“Our heartfelt concern is that if the oil and gas industry continues to develop more wells, then the problem is going to be exacerbated greatly before we finally have answers,” says Dr. Sheila Bushkin-Bedient, one of the study’s co-authors and a member of the Institute for Health and the Environment at the University at Albany-State University of New York. “In terms of chronic diseases and in terms of finding out the developmental problems of babies, we might not know that for a decade or two. We might not know about cancers for a couple of decades, and by that time, it would be too late.”

Story source: http://www.usnews.com/news/special-reports/energy-of-tomorrow/articles/2014/12/05/fracking-linked-to-infertility-miscarriages-birth-defects

Thank you!

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