[ RadSafe ] Re: Mangano's New Study

Brennan, Mike (DOH) Mike.Brennan at DOH.WA.GOV
Wed Jun 27 13:26:13 CDT 2007

YES!!  That is EXACTLY the kind of thing I was talking about.  Thanks,
Ken, for sharing this with us.  I hope that the same or similar articles
are carried in other papers. 

-----Original Message-----
From: radsafe-bounces at radlab.nl [mailto:radsafe-bounces at radlab.nl] On
Behalf Of Jenkins, Ken A.
Sent: Wednesday, June 27, 2007 10:35 AM
To: radsafe at radlab.nl
Subject: [ RadSafe ] Re: Mangano's New Study

Mangano's latest 'study' about cancer rates in the vicinity of Vogtle
Electric Generating Plant (Burke County, GA) reported earlier this week
was actually countered by the local Burke County newspaper.  (Vogtle
benefits from one of the most nuclear-friendly communities in the

Ken Jenkins
Vogtle Electric Generating Plant
Waynesboro, GA

Editorial: Blue Ridge Environmental Defense League study  
The True Citizen, Burke County, Georgia 
June 27, 2007 
The True Citizen 
Last week, a group from the Blue Ridge Environmental Defense League
(BREDL) released a study claiming a 58.5 percent increase in cancer
deaths in the 11 counties surrounding Plant Vogtle. 
BREDL hopes to use the study to block construction of two new reactors
in Burke County. 
The fact that there are no headlines about that study in this week's
True Citizen is no accident. 
While we cannot dismiss evidence of increased cancer deaths here in
Burke County, we have concluded that the statistics are not presented in
a way most observers would find convincing. 
For starters, let's look at BREDL's claim of a 58.6 percent increase in
cancer deaths in the 11-county area. 
While the number of cancer deaths has increased, the rate of cancer
deaths has not. 
In fact, according to a statement in their own study, the 11-county
cancer mortality rate decreased by 1.6 percent after Vogtle went into
full operation. 
The 11 counties still lagged behind the United States' 4.2 percent
decrease, in part because of Burke County's alleged 25.1 percent
increase during that same time period. 
If their figures are broken down by year, you'll see that an average of
33.75 Burke County residents died of cancer each year between 1987 and
Between 1991 and 2003, an average of 43.85 people died each year. 
All in all, cancer deaths in Burke County increased by about 10 persons
per year - but at the same time, the population rose by nearly 2,000. 
Beyond the play with numbers, we feel that the BREDL hurt the validity
of their study by failing to acknowledge the overwhelming correlation
between cancer deaths and other factors, particularly socioeconomic. 
According to their own study, one of the sharpest cancer death increases
in Burke County was that relating to prostate cancer. BREDL maintains
that the county's 19 deaths between 1999 and 2003 are more than double
the national rate. 
At the same time, American Cancer Society (ACS) research holds that
prostate cancer's biggest contributing factors are age, race and diet. 
ACS reports that about two-thirds of all prostate cancers are diagnosed
in men over 65, and around 60 percent more often in black men. A high
fat diet is also a big contributor. 
According to the federal census, Burke County's population is 50.9
percent black, compared to the 12.3 percent national average. 
Around 10.2 percent of the county's population is older than 65,
compared to 9.6 percent for the rest of Georgia. 
Beyond that, the National Cancer Institute has found a strong link
between cancer deaths and poverty, most likely due to the availability
and quality of health care. 
During the last census, nearly 30 percent of Burke County's population
lived below the poverty level - more than double the 12.4 percent
national average. 
During last week's press conference, BREDL called their study an "apples
to apples" comparison. 
We don't think so. 
We do agree with BREDL on one point - public health officials should
look into the health trend here in Burke County - including
socioeconomic and environmental factors that may be contributing to it. 
We only hope that, unlike this study, they'll come up with answers, not
an agenda. 

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