Cancer and the animal world:
Learning the lessons
UPdate Fall 2007
It’s not only humans. The beluga whales in
Canada’s St. Lawrence estuary are getting cancer, while those in the less-polluted
Arctic waters are not. Fish in contaminated waters have tumors, but not
those in clean water. Dogs that are exposed to herbicides from chemically
treated lawns have more
cancers than those that are not. …
It can’t get much clearer.
The belugas have survived in the world’s northern waters for millions of years,
eating octopus, crabs and fish. Now one in four of the St. Lawrence whales is
dying from cancer, mostly intestinal. They are also having trouble reproducing.
When scientists examined their bodies, the autopsies revealed high levels of
polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), which almost certainly came from an
upstream aluminum smelter.
Does the St. Lawrence beluga drink too much alcohol? Does the St. Lawrence
beluga smoke too much? Does the St. Lawrence beluga have a bad diet? Is that
why the beluga whales are ill? Do you think you are somehow immune and that it
is only the beluga whale that is being affected?
-Leone Pippard, Canadian Ecology Advocates
Book Review of Cancer: 101
Additional excerpts from Cancer: 101 Solutions
Our Chemical Body Burden
Cancer and lifestyle: looking at the whole picture www.environmentalhealth.ca/fall07lifestyle