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Harvard Study Shows Air Pollution Cuts Life Expectancy

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Cleaner air can lead to longer lives, a new study from Harvard University shows.

People living in cities where air pollution decreased in recent decades saw their life expectancy increase an average of five months as a result of cleaner air, a new study from the Harvard School of Public Health and Brigham Young University strongly suggests.

The researchers looked at the amount of small particle pollutants in 51 US cities, including Boston, Worcester, and Providence, R.I., during the '80s and '90s and found that the predicted lifespan increased most significantly in cities where air quality also increased most dramatically.

The study, which will appear in the New England Journal of Medicine, signals that efforts to curtail the small, toxic particles spewed by power plants, factories, cars and trucks and inhaled by city-dwellers had significant health benefits over those two decades. Several clean air advocates and public health specialists say the results also show that stronger standards for air pollutants are necessary.

Source:,  Harvard Study: Air Pollutants Cut Increased Life Expectancy

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