New Jersey cites diesel emissions as health concern for urban areas

| 7/21/2005

As if New Jersey’s reputation for having, um, fragrant air wasn’t enough, a new report shows that diesel pollutants could be causing major health problems in urban areas of the Garden State.

In its annual report released July 13, the Clean Air Council – an advisory board for the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection – found that diesel emissions from trucks and school buses are hurting public well-being and raising health care costs for residents in the state.

“This adverse economic impact is partly due to the cost of health care associated with treating conditions caused or aggravated by air pollution, such as lost school and work days, lost productivity and citizens having to use the hospital systems because they do not have health care coverage,” the report stated.

According to New Jersey Department of Health data, the state had a $30 million dollar-per-year increase in charity-care costs. It is estimated that 2 million New Jersey residents do not have health care, the report said.