Washington University geochemist criticizes Weldon Spring radiation report

Monday, February 20, 2012 | 8:11 a.m. CST; updated 10:06 a.m. CST, Monday, February 20, 2012

WELDON SPRING — Health advocates and scientists are criticizing a new state report on leukemia risks near a radioactive waste storage site in St. Charles County.

The report released by the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services in December concluded that residents in five ZIP codes around the town of Weldon Spring are not at higher risk of developing leukemia due to waste stored there from when explosives were made during World War II.

But Washington University geochemist Robert Criss told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch that the report diluted data by looking at too many ZIP codes, made no correction for extensive population growth in St. Charles County and failed to study other types of cancer with known links to radiation.

The authors of the report declined to answer questions.


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