Louisiana's industrial corridor linked to higher rates of low birth weight and preterm births

A new study reveals that babies in Louisiana's "Cancer Alley" face significantly higher risks of low birth weight and preterm births, exceeding national averages.

Aliya Uteuova reports for The Guardian.


In short:

  • Research from Tulane University, published in a Human Rights Watch report, highlights alarming rates of low birth weight and preterm births in Louisiana's "Cancer Alley."
  • The study connects these health issues to the area's high pollution levels, predominantly from more than 200 petrochemical plants.
  • Residents, particularly in predominantly Black communities, report various health problems, including increased cancer rates and reproductive issues.

Key quote:

"The level of human health crisis is identifiable and preventable."

— Antonia Juhasz, senior researcher at Human Rights Watch

Why this matters:

This issue underscores a critical intersection of environmental justice and public health, particularly affecting marginalized communities. It highlights the urgent need for policy interventions to mitigate pollution's impact on health, especially in vulnerable populations.

A recent report underscores the climate, environmental, and human rights tolls linked to petrochemical production, adding to the ongoing controversy surrounding the practices of the U.S. fossil fuel industry.

Op-ed: In a warming world, nurses heal people and the planet

Nurses have the experience, motivation and public support to make an important contribution in tackling the climate crises.

During the Covid pandemic, the world cheered as we nurses stepped up. Everyone knows we are essential workers, but our essential role in coping with the climate crisis is much less cheered on, despite our ongoing efforts to be part of the solution.

Keep reading...Show less
Senator Whitehouse & climate change

Senator Whitehouse puts climate change on budget committee’s agenda

For more than a decade, Senator Sheldon Whitehouse gave daily warnings about the mounting threat of climate change. Now he has a powerful new perch.
Amid LNG’s Gulf Coast expansion, community hopes to stand in its way
Coast Guard inspects Cameron LNG Facility in preparation for first LNG export in 2019. (Credit: Coast Guard News)

Amid LNG’s Gulf Coast expansion, community hopes to stand in its way

This 2-part series was co-produced by Environmental Health News and the journalism non-profit Economic Hardship Reporting Project. See part 1 here.Este ensayo también está disponible en español
Keep reading...Show less

FEMA faces potential funding shortfall amid increasing natural disasters

With hurricanes and heat waves growing more severe, FEMA's funding might deplete before summer's end.

Kristin Toussaint reports for Fast Company.

Keep reading...Show less

Biden administration finalizes environmental regulations ahead of potential Trump presidency

In a race against time, Biden's team completed key environmental and energy regulations to safeguard them from potential repeal under a future Trump administration.

Kevin Bogardus and Robin Bravender report for E&E News.

Keep reading...Show less
EU elections Green party decline
Credit: European Parliament/Flickr

The Green parties face a decline in European elections

The Green parties lost a third of their seats in the European Parliament, raising questions about the future of Europe's climate movement.

Matina Stevis-Gridneff reports for The New York Times.

Keep reading...Show less

Swiss parliament dismisses climate ruling favoring older women

Swiss lawmakers have rejected a European court's ruling that weak climate policies violate the human rights of older women.

Ajit Niranjan reports for The Guardian.

Keep reading...Show less

Editorial: Environmental policies losing voter support amid economic concerns

Voter support for environmental policies is waning due to rising economic concerns, jeopardizing climate change initiatives.

The Editorial Board writes for The Washington Post.

Keep reading...Show less
From our Newsroom
planetary health diet

This diet will likely keep you alive longer — and help the planet

New research finds the Planetary Health Diet lowers our risk to most major causes of death.

environmental justice

LISTEN: Jose Ramon Becerra Vera on democratizing science

“In their own way, they’re becoming experts, not just of their experiences but also of the data collection process.”

The oil and gas industry’s radioactive problem: Q&A with Justin Nobel

The oil and gas industry’s radioactive problem: Q&A with Justin Nobel

“Of all the levels of radium in produced water or brine around the world that I’ve looked at, I have encountered none that are consistently as high as what comes out of the Marcellus Shale.”

environmental justice pittsburgh

Environmental justice advocates find hope, healing and community in Pittsburgh

Advocates and researchers gathered to not only discuss ongoing fights but victories, self-care and cautious optimism about the path ahead.

Stay informed: sign up for The Daily Climate newsletter
Top news on climate impacts, solutions, politics, drivers. Delivered to your inbox week days.