Thursday, June 24, 2010

American Lung Association Urges US Senate to Ban Burn Pits

The American Lung Association requested the US Senate to protect the health of American shoulders should be protected by banning the use of burn pits. The American Lung Association testified about urgent lung health issues facing military personnel and the Department of Defense. H. James Gooden, Chair of the Board of Directors of the American Lung Association, appeared before the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Defense to urge that action be taken quickly to address the growing health threat posed by burn pits in Iraq and Afghanistan. Gooden also spoke to the importance of restoring an important lung cancer research program.

Gooden also spoke to the health threat posed by burn pits in Iraq and Afghanistan, after reports of soldiers who were exposed to them are now returning home with lung illnesses including asthma, chronic bronchitis and sleep apnea.

"The American Lung Association is deeply concerned by reports of the use of burn pits and the negative effects on lung health on soldiers in both Iraq and Afghanistan," Gooden testified. "Emissions from burning waste contain fine particulate matter, sulfur oxides, carbon monoxide, volatile organic compounds, and various irritant gases such as nitrogen oxides that can scar the lungs. Emissions also contain chemicals that are known or suspected to be carcinogens. We urge the DoD to immediately find alternatives to this method of waste disposal," Gooden testified.