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Report Blames Construction Pollution for CA Deaths, Poor Health


Pollution from construction equipment is taking a major toll on the health of Californians. A new report from the Union of Concerned Scientists says construction-related diesel emissions caused at least 1,100 premature deaths statewide last year. KPBS Reporter Kenny Goldberg has the story.

The report says diesel emissions from construction equipment also caused 183,000 lost work days in 2005. The study reveals out of the state’s 15 air basins, the public health toll in San Diego County was the third highest.

Vehicles engineer Don Anair wrote the report. He says the three most affected cities in the County are San Diego, Chula Vista, and Oceanside.

Anair: And they’re in the top because of the combination of a large amount of construction activity, and a large amount of people living in these areas, who could potentially be exposed to construction equipment pollution.”                    

Anair says older equipment like excavators are the major culprits. State regulators are considering new retrofitting rules for older diesel engines. Kenny Goldberg, KPBS News.

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