2013 CPEO Military List Archive

From: Lenny Siegel <lsiegel@cpeo.org>
Date: Tue, 19 Mar 2013 20:16:30 -0700 (PDT)
Reply: cpeo-military
Subject: [CPEO-MEF] HEALTH, MUNITIONS: New ATSDR report on Vieques (PR) health

Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR)
March 19, 2013

Executive Summary
Scope of Review

ATSDR recognizes that Viequenses are concerned about the health of everyone who lives on their island. ATSDR further recognizes that Viequenses are concerned about whether past military exercises on Vieques might have contributed to health conditions some on the island have reported.

ATSDR wants to be responsive to those concerns. We have worked to ensure that this analysis of Viequense environmental data is thorough; that it considers all readily available investigations and research, especially research completed since release of our 2001-2003 public health assessments (PHA). Simply stated, this report's nine chapters endeavor (1) to assess critically all of the available exposure and health information relevant to Viequense public health issues, 2) to draw conclusions - albeit often with some degree of uncertainty - and 3) to make recommendations for environmental and public health agencies as well as for scientific researchers that will assist in reducing that uncertainty.

The circumstances on Vieques typify many of the difficulties faced by the public and by public health officials when responding to concerns about the effects of hazardous substances. Although numerous questions arise regarding exposures and people's health, the means are limited to answer such questions definitively. When reaching conclusions about hazardous waste and public health, some degree of uncertainty will always remain. Thus in this evaluation, ATSDR identifies the available data as well as the data gaps.

The report's principal focus is to review and update environmental data on Vieques air, soil, seafood, and locally grown foods. In addition, this report adds human biomonitoring and health outcome data. It begins with a review and update of !ÏÏDÏÏÏ 2003 Fish PHA data on consumption of fish caught off the Vieques coast. Next are two chapters on human biomonitoring data and health outcome data. These are the chapters whose subject matter was not included in previous ATSDR reports on Vieques. At the end of each chapter, we provide conclusions, recommendations, and references specific to that chapter. Four chapters are dedicated to examination of exposure pathways from food, air, soil, and water. Chapter 9 summarizes all the conclusions and recommendations from each chapter.


For the entire report, go to


Lenny Siegel
Executive Director, Center for Public Environmental Oversight
a project of the Pacific Studies Center
278-A Hope Street
Mountain View, CA 94041
Voice: 650-961-8918 or 650-969-1545
Fax: 650-961-8918

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