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Posted Wed Feb 18 2009: from University of Georgia, via EurekAlert:
Link between unexploded munitions in oceans and cancer-causing toxins determined
During a research trip to Puerto Rico, ecologist James Porter took samples from underwater nuclear bomb target USS Killen, expecting to find evidence of radioactive matter -- instead he found a link to cancer. Data revealed that the closer corals and marine life were to unexploded bombs from the World War II vessel and the surrounding target range, the higher the rates of carcinogenic materials. "Unexploded bombs are in the ocean for a variety of reasons -- some were duds that did not explode, others were dumped in the ocean as a means of disposal," said Porter. "And we now know that these munitions are leaking cancer-causing materials and endangering sea life." ... According to research conducted in Vieques, residents here have a 23 percent higher cancer rate than do Puerto Rican mainlanders. Porter said a future step will be "to determine the link from unexploded munitions to marine life to the dinner plate."
[Read more stories about: toxic water, unintended consequences]

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