Environmental Groups Claim Coal Killed 7,600 People in Europe in 2016… Can’t Name Any of the Victims.

Guest commentary by David Middleton

Groups target Europe’s coal companies over harmful emissions

FILE – In this Feb. 27, 2018 file photo a coal-fired power station steams in the cold winter air in Gelsenkirchen, Germany. Environmental groups say 10 utility companies are responsible for the majority of premature deaths caused by emissions from coal-fired power plants in Europe. In a report published Tuesday, Nov. 20, 2018 five campaign groups, including Greenpeace, blame the companies for 7,600 premature deaths and millions of work days lost across Europe in 2016. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner, file) (Martin Meissner)


By FRANK JORDANS | November 20, 2018

BERLIN (AP) — Environmental groups claimed Tuesday that 10 utility companies are responsible for the majority of premature deaths caused by emissions from coal-fired power plants in Europe.

In a report on the health impacts of coal emissions across Europe, five campaign groups blamed the utility companies for 7,600 premature deaths and millions of work days lost because of health problems in 2016.

Emissions from German utility company RWE are said to be responsible for the highest number of premature deaths, mostly from tiny particles known as PM2.5.

RWE said it abides by legal limits on emissions and continually tries to lower them.

The five groups, which include Greenpeace…


The activists’ report finds that four of the most damaging companies operate in Germany…


Dr. Michael Barczok, a spokesman for the German Pulmonologists Association, said the harmful health effects of PM2.5s described in the study — such as their contribution to increased risk of asthma, heart disease, cancer, diabetes and strokes — are well-established

“It’s true that coal can trigger these illnesses,” said Barczok, a practicing pulmonologist who wasn’t involved with the report and declined to comment on the precise figures. “We have to assume people are sickened by this, or that it can contribute to their premature deaths.”


Good fracking grief!!!

  • “The harmful health effects of PM2.5s described in the study — such as their contribution to increased risk of asthma, heart disease, cancer, diabetes and strokes — are well-established.”
  • “It’s true that coal can trigger these illnesses,” claimed a “pulmonologist who wasn’t involved with the report and declined to comment on the precise figures.”
  • “We have to assume people are sickened by this, or that it can contribute to their premature deaths.”


  • The science is settled.
  • No, I can’t provide any specific support for the numbers.
  • We have to assume the science is settled or more people will die!

So… Coal, via PM2.5’s killed 7,600 people in Europe in 2016 with asthma, heart disease, cancer, diabetes and strokes.  Name them… Any of them.  It shouldn’t be too difficult to identify the bodies.  We have a pretty good idea as to how many people in Germany died from various causes.  Being a modern, industrialized nation, they probably kept track of who died in 2016.

The World Health Organization keeps track of how many people die from various causes.  In the most recent year available (2015),  244,707 people in Germany died of asthma, heart disease, diabetes and strokes:

Germany  No. of deaths
 Diabetes mellitus                                       24,400
 Ischaemic heart diseases                                     128,230
 Cerebrovascular diseases                                       56,982
 Chronic lower respiratory disease                                       35,095
 Total                                     244,707


If I included cancer, the number would have been even larger.  From 2006-2015, an average of 245,000 people died each year in Germany from asthma, heart disease, diabetes and strokes… And these Bozo’s think they can attribute 7,600 deaths to those causes plus cancer, across Europe, to coal?

Figure 1. Annual number of deaths in Germany from asthma, heart disease, diabetes and strokes(World Health Organization) and annual coal consumption (million tonnes oil equivalent, BP 2018 Statistical Review of World Energy).

Figure 2. Age standardized death rate in Germany from asthma, heart disease, diabetes and strokes(World Health Organization) and annual coal consumption (million tonnes oil equivalent, BP 2018 Statistical Review of World Energy).


Even if you could attribute 7,600 deaths in Europe in 2016 to coal (via asthma, heart disease, cancer, diabetes and strokes), that’s only 3% of the number of deaths just in Germany, just from asthma, heart disease, diabetes and strokes.

Here’s the pièce de résistance…

In a report on the health impacts of coal emissions across Europe, five campaign groups blamed the utility companies for 7,600 premature deaths and millions of work days lost because of health problems in 2016.

How many work days would have been lost if Germany shut down all of its coal-fired power plants?


Figure 3. US EIA

The Greenpeace-of-schist

Yes… I know that asthma, heart disease, diabetes and strokes aren’t strictly synonymous with chronic lower respiratory disease, ischaemic heart disease, diabetes mellitus and cerebrovascular diseases… But that’s the closest that WHO listed and they are close enough to demonstrate the idiocy of this Greenpeace-of-schist.

Needless to say, the Greenpeace-of-schist is based on (drum roll, please)… Models…

How many work days would have been lost in 2016 if RWE had shuttered all of its coal-fired plants?  How many premature deaths would have occurred due to a lack of reliable electricity?

127 thoughts on “Environmental Groups Claim Coal Killed 7,600 People in Europe in 2016… Can’t Name Any of the Victims.

  1. The law of diminishing returns – As the air gets incrementally cleaner, the number of premature deaths increase.

        • I keep reading about an excess death rate of around 20,000 each year, year in year out, in the UK due to pensioners, the homeless and the poor being unable to aford heating in winter. (ref Daily Mail from official stat’s). Varies year to year.
          Last year I read Germany is losing the same numbers, for the same reason.
          This suggests the number of Europeans dying from the lack of cold may be over 100,000.

          • You are on the right track Peter.

            The preliminary estimate of Excess Winter Deaths in the UK last winter was 48,000.

            That is higher than average, and I attribute it to a cold winter, high fuel costs and poor home insulation and heating systems.

        • Roger

          “The 7600 was probably pensioners not able to afford heating.”

          This coup de grace is surprisingly common among people with heart problems, lower respiratory infections and so on. Cold kills, most surely. That is why they call pneumonia, “the old man’s friend”.

          A report recently says that more than 11% of all deaths in China are caused by chronic underheating.

          What we have now is competition for attribution to the point of significant overlap. Now, everyone dies prematurely multiples over because of everything. BTW “premature” means before the age of 86 (WHO).

          Attribution is not causation. It is in fact worse than correlation because with correlation, at least there is some correlation. Attribution is just a committee saying, “We think it is so.”

    • Are these so-called environmentalists the same people who claim that 27 species of critters go extinct every – day? – but can’t name any of those species?

      Don’tcha just love hyperbole, though? These scaremongers outdo sideshow barkers at a county fair.

  2. Very interesting … for liberals its just fine to report statistical illnesses and deaths, as if they are real. If you follow this the sports agencies should just start reporting statistical wins and losses… if that were the case we wouldn’t even have to watch the games or read the box scores.

    • The following was excerpted from the above published quote by FRANK JORDANS, to wit:

      [note: it sorta seems like I already read the following, ….. like 10 to 15+ years ago, as denoted by my included verbiage]

      In a report on the health impacts of coal emissions cigarette smoke across Europe, five campaign groups blamed the utility tobacco companies for 7,600 millions of premature deaths and millions of work days lost because of health problems in 2016.

      Dr. Michael Barczok, a spokesman for the German Pulmonologists National Cancer Association, said the harmful health effects of PM2.5s cigarette smoke described in the study — such as their contribution to increased risk of asthma, heart disease, cancer, diabetes and strokes — are well-established

      “It’s true that coal secondhand cigarette smoke can trigger these illnesses,” said Barczok, a practicing pulmonologist who wasn’t involved with the report and declined to comment on the precise figures.

  3. It looks like another LNT (linear,no threshold) study, which given the size of the population affected, actually means a nearly undetectable effect. But 7600 deaths sounds so much more scary than an increase best written in negative exponential form.

  4. Cue the marble cenotaph To The Unnamed Victims.

    Proof, if any were still needed, that climate change hits the most vulnerable among us—people so disadvantaged, they don’t even exist—the hardest.

    I hope they put it next to the monument to the Anonymous Pacific Nations whose Atlantean fate was first (and last) mentioned in An Inconvenient Truth. Apparently the refugees “evacuated to New Zealand” never made it there. We may never know their names, the language they spoke, anything about their culture, their religion or even their architecture. By now they must be so far below the surface there’s no point looking for them.

    If you find any of this narrative fishy, don’t. Remember, 50 million climate refugees managed to elude the entire world’s detection in 2010 (a couple of them are probably in your house right now), so a few hundred thou is nothing.

    • One might think that if climate change was wiping out the people who don’t exist… the Democrat voter base would be shrinking… Oh wait… Democrats rely on the votes of dead people who never existed… Never mind.

      • No, they did really exist. They are now dead. In this the Democrats are giving life to Burke’s theory that the political community should include not just the living, but also the dead and the yet unborn.

    • Brad Keyes November 26, 2018 at 12:30 pm
      Brad please remember this is Germany we are speaking of. It is most likely a training or safely issue.
      below is a fork lift training video from your homeland.
      it is slow at first, but i think you will be “amused” by it.


      • Mike

        where did the forking video go? Is this forking funny? Funny enough to go to more effort to find it? Or it’s only a practical humor at my expense? Well rest assured it is not so expensive.

        Consider me gaslighted. I just spent a halfhour moving my mouse pointer very slowly around the whiteness to prove whether the video is there (only small) because it would be typic Leugner humor to make his victims watch something 2 pixels thick.

        Anyway hah hah very amusive. Next time the lust will be all mine. Well, there may be lust on each side to begin with, but I will have the last lust.

        No this is not a threat, moderators. It is a projection.

    • There was a foolish person posting on a global warming meme at Insty claiming that a bunch of homeless people living near the beaches were going shortly drown because of sea level rise because we skeptics lacked a logistics gene.

      • Here’s what the homeless on the beach should do to avoid drowning because of sea level rise: Stand up with your back to the ocean. Walk forward to a higher level on the beach where the waves are not breaking. Sit back down and have some more wine.

    • RE: Remember, 50 million climate refugees managed to elude the entire world’s detection in 2010 (a couple of them are probably in your house right now)

      They are in my house. Seven of them. Let’s see, There’s Gilligan and the Skipper too, the Millionaire and his wife, the Movie Star, the Professor and Mary Ann, all here from that tropical isle, aboard that tiny ship!
      Good thing they were rescued before the island sank — or capsized.

  5. Premature death is a strange statistical figure. They are not really dead, more like zombies, that don’t know they are dead.
    The funny thing is, that premature deaths must be compensated by late deaths to keep the average, but that is never told.

    • You may be interested in this:
      Here are some “real” numbers to look at for premature deaths, calculated as “Expected Years of Life Lost” (YLLs) due to various “items”. From an open access article, publishing these data collected in 2004 for San Francisco residents.
      Open access: https://bmcpublichealth.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/1471-2458-8-116

      For Man

      Item YLLs years
      HIV/AID 20.3
      Suicide 19.9
      Drug overdose 21.7
      Homicide 25.0
      Alcohol 17.4
      The above is just a short summary of the many interesting “items”/YLLs
      Nothing there about PM2.5. What could be the YLLs for PM2.5, maybe 0.3?

      • And what about “YLG” Expected Years of Life GAINED. They never look at the good side. In the US, Life Expectancy for someone born 90 years ago, was about 57 years, and today it is around 79 years. That’s a GAIN in expected years of life of almost 40%, and almost all due to more and better food, clean water, sanitation, better shelter, transportation, medicine, you name it. Nearly all are made possible because we are blessed with reliable, clean and inexpensive energy. Many, perhaps most inhabitants of Earth are not so blessed, but Germany would qualify.

        Compare the extra 22 years of life for each (US) person against a statistical possibility that PM2.5 may have played a small part in a death. The increased life expectancy
        a) far outweighs the years “lost”, and
        b) places people more at risk of death merely by AGING than from PM2.5.

        Take away fossil fuels and everything derived from them from these idiot environmental groups and their life expectancy is what? 3 months?

        • Nicely stated. No statistical analysis needed. Cheaper and more available energy has been at the source of all gains, in multiple areas to make our life better and as you stated longer.

  6. The coal fired power plants were run to backstop intermittent electricity from wind turbines. Shouldn’t they assume part of the blame? Oh, wait. I forgot. Green energy has no downsides.

  7. Vegetables must have a small but significant detrimental affect on people. So must going on protest marches.

    Perhaps someone could do a similar no-threshold calculation on all the things activists hold dear, and tell us how many people they killed…..

    • Drinking water will be by far the largest numbers of deaths per year if you follow the statistical garbage these studies pump out. There is usually half a million or so diarrhoeal deaths each year that is just to start you then throw in minor contaminants and it will grow from there and it probably ends up in the millions.

      There is logically only one conclusion, no human should drink water …. not ever it will kill you.

      • Statitical garbage?

        Hmm. strangely enough I spent about 3 years doing survival analysis. and getting paid pretty darn well for it. Looking at the studies I didnt find any garbage.

        Now you will have to excuse me because I was raised at climate audit where the great Steve mcIntyre taught skeptics how to document when a study had garbage in it.

        Anyway, the bassis is more than statistical although the pathenogenesis for every
        disease related to Pm hasnt been laid out

        “PM2.5-induced ROS enhances the gene and protein expression of pro-inflammatory factors, including tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α), interleukin-1β (IL-1β), interleukin-6 (IL-6), interleukin-8 (IL-8), and monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 (MCP-1). ROS also enhances inflammation in the pathogenesis of various diseases [26,27,28,29,30]. Inflammation has been shown to be involved in most, if not all, of the adverse health effects of PM2.5, and has demonstrated a central role in the impacts of PM2.5. In genotoxicity, augmented levels of 7-hydro-8-oxo-2′-deoxyguanosine (8-oxodG) are critical predictors of oxidative DNA damage. PM2.5-induced ROS is associated with several types of DNA damage through enhanced levels of strand breaks, 8-oxodG, and endonuclease III in animal and human cells [17,29,31,32].”

        PM2.5 enhances autophagy mediated by the PI3K/Akt/mTOR pathway inhibition [50], inhibits P53 expression, and induces the hypermethylation of the P53 promoter through the ROS-Akt-DNMT3B pathway in BEAS-2B cells [51]. PM2.5 also induces the expression of the IL-8 gene by endocytosis and inducing oxidative stress in these cells [52]. Secondary organic aerosol-PM2.5 downregulates the expression and activation of the Nrf2-related transcription factor system in BEAS-2B cells [53]. Exposure of the ALI system to motorcycle exhaust increases oxidative stress and cytotoxicity. The use of a 0.20-μm PM filter dramatically reduces the particulate composition in PM and the concentration of total hydrocarbons. The filter displays protective effects by relieving the survival of exposed pulmonary epithelial cells and decreasing the ROS levels. Therefore, emission factors, such as different sizes of PM and total hydrocarbons from motorcycles, may play a role in motorcycle exhaust -related toxicity [54]. PM2.5-induced ROS also stimulates oxidative stress [55,56], apoptosis [57], and mitochondrial damage in 16-HBE cells [58].

        PM2.5–0.3 induces genetic instability and alterations of the cell cycle via TP53-RB gene signaling pathway activation in human alveolar macrophages and an L132 co-culture model [59]. Industrial PM2.5 extracts enhance inflammation and pulmonary epithelial cell injuries via the RhoA/ROCK-dependent NF-кB signaling pathway in a co-culture system of BEAS-2 and THP-1 cells [60].

        PM2.5 enhances levels of arginase II via an EGF-related signaling pathway of oxidative stress and expression in human bronchial epithelial cells, which may be involved in the mechanism of adverse effects induced by PM exposure in asthma patients [61]. Tetra-OH-B[a]P and 8-OHdG levels are elevated in the DNA of primary human bronchial epithelial (HBE) cells from COPD patients compared to those in HBE from normal subjects. This indicates that COPD-DHBE cells were more sensitive to PM2.5 derived from air pollution [62]. Transition metals in PM increase the levels of IL-8 and HO-1, leading to ROS production in mucus-secreting ALI-cultured primary bronchial epithelial cells (PBECs) [63].

        According to these studies, PM2.5 extracts impact various epithelial cells of the airway. Organic matter can affect the expression of crucial enzymes, and it influences the repair and synthesis of DNA. Organic extracts also play a key role in oxidative damage, the inflammatory response, and signaling pathways. Hydro-soluble fractions generate ROS, induce the secretion of inflammatory factors, and are related to genetic toxicity and the apoptotic response. Transition metals are related to genetic toxicity and inflammatory responses.

        Etc etc etc

  8. Just imagine how many people will die because of this same crowd’s opposition to nuclear power. I mean, we’re all going to die because of greenhouse emissions, and over the last 40 years they’ve effectively throttled the only large-scale, non-carbon emitting energy source that had any chance of meeting our needs for power.

  9. If coal(mercury) involved Also involved are vaccinations, amalgams and glyphosate (magnesium depletion) search ” magnesium depletion” and “mercury” together for overwhelming proof.

  10. Be careful when graphing deaths by disease type, as we get better at stopping early deaths due to cancer and heart disease an aging population becomes increasingly susceptible to death from age related complications to diseases that normally have lower mortality in the young – pneumonia, influenza etc. Hence you would expect a rise in % of people dying by these diseases as the population ages regardless of any changes in air quality.

  11. While a modern coal fired power station does clean up most if not all of the nasties in the ash, having to run inefficiently to make up for the shortfall in Green electricity output makes this clean up far harder. So its the fault of renewable generation, not the other way around.


  12. In a few years we will count the killed people by particulates from wood fired stoves in Germany, wood fired stoves promoted to save the CO2 balance !

  13. Perhaps the worst case would be the Great Smog of London. It is said that 10,000 people died as a result. I’m pretty sure they know who the victims were.

    I was talking to a Brit last summer and he informed me that London no longer gets fogs. Say What! I thought fog was a cultural icon and would be protected as such. 🙂

    • commieBob

      We get fog, not smog.

      And guess what. As the world’s warming, the cold dry air that meets with the warm moist air to make fog, isn’t as cold as it used to be, so life is better with less fog.

      Imaging that?

    • And the map in Greepeace figure 4 is utter garbage. It has UK impacts centralized in the English SW around Wiltshire and Somerset, UP-wind from London, where there are neither large numbers of power stations , nor many people to be affected. It makes no geographical sense at all. None.
      In any case, the crude resolution of their map is first revealed by the presence of ‘deaths’ in the North Sea where nobody lives at at all.

      I think the curse of our times is that of complete and utter morons get to use computer models. Much of the population still thinks that something that comes out of a computer is somehow more trustworthy than some plonker wearing a blindfold trying to throw darts against a dart-board on a wall when he is actually sitting on the donkey facing the other way.

      It’s probably a ‘first-generation’ thing: Later generations will not be so readily taken in by such rubbish in the same way as people today are much less vulnerable to TV adverts which are not even sophisticated lies, but which might have duped their grandparents.

  14. The number is inferred from a model constructed with the known and believed characteristics of coal from recovery to reclamation. It’s standard practice when information is unknown, unknowable, or incomplete for a particular, often special, and sometimes peculiar, purpose.

    • They have to use a bad model because there is no cause-and-effect study showing PM2.5 directly kills people. How else can they scare companies into giving them millions?

        • When Steve decides to lie for a cause, he goes all out.


          Nobody argues that smoking isn’t harmful. The argument has always been against second hand smoke. Either you know this already and don’t care about the truth, or you are that dumb.
          Given your posts, either proposal could be supported.

          • Mark

            People ONCE argued that smoking was not harmful for precisely the kinds of reasons people here state

            On second hand smoke

            I smoke.

            I consdier the science on second hand smoke to be open to question,
            However, I support 100% the restrictions placed on me as a smoker


            because I cannot prove second hand smoke is safe.

            Its your air too, so unless I can prove my second hand smoke is of no danger to you I will accept the restrictions on my behavior

            wanna hang out Ill blow smoke in your face

          • People argue a lot of things. There hasn’t been a serious argument from anyone that smoking is harmless since at least the 1960’s. Claims that smoking could be made safer or other qualifications of the hazards don’t count as arguments that it’s harmless. Furthermore, apart from being a great cash flow generator for farmers and tobacco companies, tobacco use provides no value-added benefits to the economy. Like alcohol consumption (I am a drinker), tobacco use is a dangerous recreational product. As a libertarian, I support the individual’s right to choose whether or not to smoke or drink, as long as they are willing to bear the costs of their own choices.

            Second-hand smoke absolutely is an irritant. Its severity as a health threat and/or carcinogen is absolutely an open question.

            As a non-smoker, whose mother and brother-in-law probably died prematurely at least in part due to smoking, I support a business owner’s right decide whether or not they wish to cater to smokers.

            However, there is no analogy here to fossil fuels. Unlike tobacco and alcohol, they literally fuel the global economy.

            So… Let’s accept arguendo that pollution from coal-fired electricity caused 7,600 premature deaths and cost millions of work days in Europe in 2016. A lack of access to coal-fired electricity (coal-fired power plants) kills more than 11,000 people worldwide, every day…

            Around three billion people – 40% of the world – cook and heat their homes using open fires and simple stoves burning biomass (wood, animal dung and crop waste), here. That’s the equivalent of smoking 400 cigarettes every hour, here. Thus, every day, 11,000 people die from cooking smoke, here.


          • controlled studies

            you mean

            ‘In animal studies, Phipps (33) exposed two groups of mice to either air or cigarette smoke for 5 weeks. After intratracheal injection of streptococcus pneumoniae, bacteria counts in mice lungs after cigarette exposure were 4 times in 24 hours and 35 times in 48 hours higher than the control group, respectively. One study in China found that air pollution could cause damage, lose and dysfunction of rat tracheal cilia, resulting in infection and a declined nonspecific immune defense, and that these mice were then prone to secondary infection (34).”

            Now your next argument will be that humans are not rats.

            animal studies?


        • As I have said in another response drinking water would easily be statistically the highest rate of these sort of attribution deaths.

          So according to Mosher we all need to stop drinking all water immediately.

          Mosher makes a deliberate stupid claim because it suits his argument but if you then apply that same argument to water it doesn’t work. That pretty much sums up how Climate Science seems to work and Mosher fits right in.

          • I should add as has been suggested if you do these sorts of studies properly you add both positive and negative sides your answer becomes obvious.

            => Every person that does not die drinking water is saved, so you drink it.
            => There are far more people saved and better off by burning fossil fuels than killed by it so we burn fossil fuels.
            => Not a lot of people saved by smoking, it is far more likely to kill you, so probably not a good idea to smoke.

  15. You can bet the people making these claims live in big houses, well paid, drive expensive cars, fly on jets, etc….

  16. ‘Premature deaths’ must be derived from statistical life-expectancies, otherwise how would they know the death was premature?

    I will make the claim that life-expectancies increased dramatically once fossil fuel (coal) use became well established. Now the extended life-expectancy is used to critique the very reason for its increase.

    IOW, if life-expectancy had not been extended due to the use of coal, then those deaths would not be considered ‘premature’ and coal would not be blamed.

  17. The Climate Liar’s agenda most certainly isn’t about saving lives, though they like to pretend it is. And now that the Big Lie about manmade global warming is coming to light, they have to fall back on other lies.

  18. 120,000,000 people in the developing world are predicted by the WHO to die by 2050 from respiratory related conditions because they have no choice but to burn cow shit and scavenged timber for heating and cooking over open fires.

    32,000,000 in developing countries are expected to go blind from vitamin A deficiency before dying because greenpeace (spit) won’t allow GM product like Golden Rice (basically a cross between rice and corn), offered royalty free to subsistence farmers in developing nations.

    15,000,000 children in developing nations are expected to die in the same period from diarrhoea because they don’t have access to simple sanitation; chlorinated water, flushing toilets and drainage to sewage treatment plants.


    Because they don’t have access to cheap, reliable, fossil fuelled derived electricity. How difficult is it to install underground pipework in a city and flushing toilets in homes? It was done wholesale in Victorian London and the Romans managed it long before that.

    Africa as an example, may be larger than the United States, but almost everyone in the remotest parts of the US has access to these basic commodities. Why can’t Africans?

    Now I can cope with the concept that developing nations have has the same access to the same resources for the same amount of time as western economies and haven’t done anything with them, in which case, why is every western nation chucking money at a basket case?

    If we are going to allow these people to die, let them, but don’t damn well brow beat me with a liberal sense of charity when the money the west contributes does nothing but maintain subsistence living and the deaths from poverty don’t stop.

    I have been subject to charity requests for 40 years of my adult life and nothing in the developing world has perceptibly changed on national scales. They are still wallowing in their own self pity and we’re paying the bills.

    Nor would I mind that were there progress, but I don’t see it.

    Perhaps it’s just me.

    • MarkW

      Didn’t they try that in the UK when 40,000 ‘premature’ deaths were attributed to diesel emissions, yet not one death had diesel emissions cited as a cause of death and the calculations were based on subjective assessments by doctors ranging from hours to days?

    • Indeed as Mike points out the number of deaths from energy poverty far exceeds the figures quoted for PM2.5. UK keeps track of excess deaths in winter due to energy poverty and the figures for UK are larger than this paper’s claim for the whole of Europe.

      PM2.5s cannot be that dangerous as face powder is largely PM2.5s and excess deaths from powdering noses are not recorded when you would expect people to dropping like flies.

      • yes all pm25 is like face powder.!!!

        because skeptic on wuwt said so

        “Endothelial cells of vascular tissue form a tightly arranged layer on the surface of blood vessel linings. These cells regulate metabolism and the secretion functions of various physiological phenomena, including thrombosis prevention, blood volume, and blood pressure [72]. Metal ions of PM2.5 cause oxidative stress, resulting in PM2.5-mediated mitochondrial apoptosis via the NF-κB pathway in human umbilical vein endothelial cells (EA.hy926), which may enhance metal ions coated with endothelial cells [72]. PM2.5 stimulates oxidative stress and inflammation in endothelial cells; ERK1/2 is involved in the signaling pathway and leads to PM2.5-induced EA.hy926 endothelial cell injury [73].

        Coal-fired PM2.5 from coal combustion has the potential to reduce cell viability, induce oxidative DNA damage, and induce global DNA methylation, and metal ions may be crucial factors that impact cellular toxicity in EA.hy926 cells [74]. PM2.5-induced ROS enhanced the levels of VCAM-1 and ICAM-1 via the ERK/Akt/NF-κB axis, which leads to monocyte adhesion to endothelial cells [75]. In a co-culture system of human umbilical vein endothelial cells and monocytic U937 cells, PM2.5 and PM10 enhanced monocytic adhesion via the expression of adhesion molecules, such as E-selectin, P-selectin, and ICAM-1, in the development of inflammatory responses, which may be used to evaluate the progression of atherosclerosis [76].”

  19. Agenda 21 kills 30,000 people per year in Europe from policies creating fuel poverty . Lets see 7,000 vs 30,000 hmmm ?
    3,000 people killed in 9/11 and over 30,000 from opioids per year and climbing thanks to the US Mail bringing this shit in from China and elsewhere . Why would the US Mail service facilitate transport of mass genocide drugs ? All part of the population reduction strategy of eco warriors and their hedge fund billionaire masters ?
    Any country that would like to go without fossil fuels ? Nah just send money .

  20. “Even if you could attribute 7,600 deaths in Europe in 2016 to coal (via asthma, heart disease, cancer, diabetes and strokes), that’s only 3% of the number of deaths just in Germany, just from asthma, heart disease, diabetes and strokes”.
    So: 7,600 deaths aren’t really important because they’re only 3% of the deaths for other reasons. What numbers would be needed then to make such deaths important? 30,000 or so, would that do it? Or maybe 60,000?

    • Straw man fallacy. I never said they weren’t important, even if they were real.

      The number is too small to be statistically differentiated in anything approaching a robust manner.

      The number is not verifiable.

      The number is far less than the number of people who die each year from the effects of energy poverty, some of whom can actually be identified.

    • Nor did you reverse the ledger and say how many are saved, the equation has two sides.

      Bob if I used your analysis we would immediately ban all vehicle travel (car, plane, train the lot) you can do nothing but have an accident and die in them. So why do we have them and you no doubt use them so why?

  21. There is a very good resaon why you can’t name the peopleand why it would be illegal to name the people.

    In the push for Open data we face a few objections most f which are easy to answer. The hardest case to handle is medical data. As we push for open data there is always someone who will say

    “If we have open data, then we will have to release patients medical records” And our response is, well the medical data can be sanitized to make the patient anonymous. And the response is
    ‘Some idiot will try to make a case that if you cant name the patient, then the data is no good”
    And our counter argument is
    ‘NO one, no one would be idiotic enough to ask for patients names”


    Here is how these studies are done. I’ll take an example from Hong Kong because that’s where I am today.
    it could just as easily be seoul or Beijing. Same problem.

    For one set of numbers you keep track of emergency rooms visits. Patients names are removed.
    You have admissions for say asthma. And you have pm2.5 concentrations

    You not that when pm2.5 is low — say 100 that you have 4-5 admissions a day for acute attacks
    Now of course you cant name the people, because the health data comes to you with no patient
    names. Any way, then you notice that when pm2.5 goes to 200, the number of causes doubles
    and when it goes to 400 they quadruple.. and so forth. Now of course you dont have
    the names of the people because in most places its illegal to share patient personal information.

    Of course there will always be some idiot asking for the names and trying to deny the science as a consequence.

    The second kind of attack is this: the result is only statistical. Yup it could be something else
    causing the increase in admissions in emergency when pm2.5 spikes. It could be unicorns!
    These unicorns roam in Seoul, Hong Kong, India, Beijing, places where Pm2.5 is high and we see
    increased deaths and illness ( over a background rate) in all these places unicorns are there causing these increases.

    Bottom line: The statistics are pretty clear: pm2.5 goes up and you get more death and disease.
    Can you name the people? Err no, it would be against the law in most places to expose patient information.
    Can you establish that pm2.5 was the cause? You mean like controlled studies ( there is one natural experiment like this in China)? No we generally do not do controlled experiments on people, when we
    have good reason to believe the experiment will be dangerous.

    What’s a policy maker to do? You note that whenever the coal plant turns off the scrubbers that the pm2.5 shoots up. And you note increased admissions in ER. A diligent policy maker might say
    “err, hey, mr coal operator, we see this correlation. your job is now to prove to US, that these excess admisions are NOT the result of increased Pm25.”

    The policy maker doesnt need to know the names
    The policy maker doesnt need to have controlled experiments
    The policy maker can note the correlation and simply, and wisely, shift the burden of proof
    to the coal operator.

    you are dumping this stuff in our air.
    we see deaths and disease increase
    NO you cannot have the names, its called privacy. nice try.
    and NO you cannot continue to make our air thick with pm25 ( full of nasty heavy metals)
    until you prove it’s safe.

    • I do agree with you that PM2.5 is bad for the lungs… And it probably results in some prenature deaths. However, the attribution of a specific number of prenature deaths to coal is pure science fiction

      And… We do have the names of at least some of the people actually killed by energy poverty.

      “Rosa PV” (as she is described in the media) died alone, choking on fumes from a fire started by one of the candles she used for light in her flat in the city of Reus, south of Barcelona, early last Monday.

      It emerged that her electricity had been cut off for non-payment of bills. Rosa’s solitary plight caused protesters’ voices to be raised in unison against energy poverty as winter approaches.

      There have been demonstrations of sorrow for Rosa and anger at the failure of the authorities to take care of such an elderly citizen, in Reus, Barcelona and elsewhere this week.

      The leader of the anti-austerity Podemos party, Pablo Iglesias, said his “blood was boiling” over the failure of Spain’s administrations to stop companies cutting off basic supplies to the vulnerable.

      A week before the death of Rosa, fire also claimed the life of 12-year-old Lucia Fuoli after an apparent short-circuit. The blaze was possibly caused by the use of a defective electric heater and it engulfed the fifth-floor Zaragoza apartment.


      As if on cue, the left blames this on capitalism rather than mentsal greentardation…

      An 81 year-old woman died in a fire in her flat in Reus, Catalonia in the early hours of Tuesday, November 15. The fire was caused by a candle she kept by her bed. Two months ago, the electricity company had cut off her supply as she was unable to pay. This tragic incident reveals the barbarism of a system which puts private profit above the needs of the people and highlights the brutal impact the crisis of capitalism is having on millions of families in Spain.

      The company which cut the electricity supply to this woman’s house is Gas Natural Fenosa, a Spanish multinational company operating in over 30 countries and whose main shareholders are La Caixa and Repsol. Gas Natural is the third largest supplier of gas and electricity in Spain and had profits of over €1.5 bn in 2015.


      Marxist.org hilariously provided this chart to back up their socialist nonsense…

      Electricity prices for household consumers second half 2015 ¹ EUR per kWh Source: Eurostat (click to enlarge image)

      Of course, this would never occur to them…


      • “However, the attribution of a specific number of prenature deaths to coal is pure science fiction”

        err no, it is not pure science fiction.

        Analyzing the mortality data you will find a clear statistical relationship between P25 ( and pm10)
        and Increased incidents of ER admissions and increased death from respiratory aliments.
        Thats just the data.

        From that you can build a model.. AND TEST IT.

        The critical issue is the extraploation to the low dose regimes. But you are not even smart enough to make that case.

        REGARDLESS of the uncertainities wise policy makers can CHOOSE to switch the burden of proof to the people filling the air with Pm25. There is no natural right to dump Pm25 into the commons. And if policy makers want to err on the side of caution, well they will.

        It matters NOTHING that you can name energy poverty deaths. Its not even a good distraction
        from your request for patient data on Pm25.

        That data has been anonymized. there is no legal way to get it.

        Demanding that scientists break the privacy law, is a D word kind of tactic

    • Steven Mosher November 26, 2018 at 4:53 pm
      Ah no. If the study is real, with real cases, real numbers, ages, occupations and date of passing the statistics and records would be available.
      I chaired a major industrial corporations safety committee. All injury information was available.
      All un-natural deaths get reported to the CDC, OSHA. just to name two.

      By the way in Maryland at a college mold in a dorm kill one girl and sickened many more.
      The world is a dangerous place often we most take the lesser of two evils.
      Oh and your soap box is rotting get a new one.


      • Mosher, pinned to the turf, yet again.

        That is what happens when you constantly try to fabricate your own facts, Mosh. ! 🙂

        So funny !!

      • “Ah no. If the study is real, with real cases, real numbers, ages, occupations and date of passing the statistics and records would be available.”

        Note that NAME is not in this list.

        To get mortality data ( for example heat wave related mortality data ) you cannot get patient names. yes you get the data of passing STUPID, its how you do the correlation
        YES you can get the age. And yes you get the coded disease they died forom, or the diagnosis if they are ER records.

        But dave wants to know the name

        YOU dont get to release the names dummy.

          • Pollution is also improving in Europe.

            The title was intended to be sarcastic. But, the point still stands. You can’t identify any specific people killed by PM2.5 pollution from coal-fired power plants… But you can identify specific people killed by a lack of access to affordable energy.

            Regarding the Massachusetts study…

            TABLE 1

            Descriptive Statistics: Deaths in Eastern Massachusetts, 2000–2008

            Characteristic No. (%)
             Men 216,717 (46)
             Women 251,852 (54)
             White 438,402 (94)
             Black 17,479 (4)
             Other 12,689 (3)
            Education (years)
             0–12 372,848 (80)
             >12 95,722 (20)
            Age (mean years) 75.0

            Setting aside naming specific victims of PM2.5 poisoning, they claim that “for every 10-μg/ m3 increase in short-term PM2.5 exposure, there was a 2.8% increase in mortality (95% CI = 2.0–3.5).” OK… What would the average age at time of death have been in Eastern Massachusetts, with zero-point-zero exposure to PM2.5? What would What would the average age at time of death have been in Eastern Massachusetts, with zero-point-zero exposure to PM2.5 and none of the electricity, transportation, manufacturing, etc. that was enabled by that PM2.5 exposure?

            These sorts of “studies” are totally worthless: Less people would have died without (fill-in-the-blank). This is an unverifiable assertion. Furthermore, they make no effort to quantify the benefits of affordable energy, transportation, manufacturing, etc.

            I once heard that people who exercise and eat sensible diets, on average, live six months longer than couch potatoes. Given the choice, I’ll take dying this winter on my couch, watching football, drinking beer and eating pizza, over dying next summer, jogging while eating kale.

          • Mosher pushing more pseudoscience again with his English degree, there is a backlash about this sort of junk in medicine at the moment. It’s junk pure and simple because it doesn’t meet the requirements of science and it leads to all sorts of absolute stupidity based largely on the bias of the promoter.

          • Dave,

            did you ever see me say that

            A) pollution was not improving.
            B) That no problem was bigger?

            No, you didnt see me make these arguments.

            Your argument, is that not being able to name people is somehow a statitical
            fact that undermines what we know statistically.

            More PM 25 is a bad thing.
            it is not a good thing.
            it is a bad thing.

            But sure, [SNIP – STOP painting everyone with an opinionated broad brush – Anthony] since we cannot legally name people who got sick, and since some folks die in the cold, Therefore we can go to pm 25 levels like we have in beijing.

            A) there is no proof pm 25 kills
            B) even if there was statistical evidence, this comes from statistical models,
            and everyone knows models sucks
            C) we cant name a single person who died

            Therefore pm25 at levels like folks saw during the Camp fire, like folks see in beijing
            is acceptable.

    • The problem with your argument is that none of cities you mentioned is in Europe. China has literally no environmental laws that are enforced. Because of this, the air, water, land, food, even powdered baby milk are unhealthy.

  22. China now generates 66.7% of TOTAL energy from coal and the US just 17.1%. But China’s life expectancy has jumped to 76, just 6 years or so behind the OECD. So how many lives does their extreme use of coal (over the last few decades) saved?

    Oh and in their big cities the life expectancy is about the same as the OECD and this drops in rural areas. Clearly fossil fuels are a life saver, just look at the data from Dr Rosling’s 200 countries 1810 to 2010 on youtube.

    I also understand that the fantasists prefer their mitigation fantasies, but in the real world China now generates 66.7% of TOTAL primary energy from coal while the US generates just 17.1%. Here’s the data from the EU based IEA and please also note the generation from clueless Geo+ S&Wind energy.

    Little wonder that Dr Hansen called Paris COP 21 “just BS and fra-d”. So when will they wake up and start to live in the real world?

    Here’s China. https://www.iea.org/stats/WebGraphs/CHINA4.pdf

    Here’s the US. https://www.iea.org/stats/WebGraphs/USA4.pdf

    • And the WHO “life expectancy” data include gun deaths and motor vehicle deaths, which are significant in the US, but have nothing to do with health or health care.

  23. Nearly 20 yrs ago, there was a multi-day expose in my local paper about cancer issues in the industrial area of town. Not denying there was an issue, but one of the focal points was a man who died in his early 60s from lung cancer. His widow blamed it on air pollution. Accompanying the story that day was a photo of that same widow, sitting at her kitchen table…smoking.

  24. How do they separate the premature deaths attributable to pm2.5 from coal fired power stations, from the premature deaths attributable to pm2.5 from using diesel powered vehicles, the newest bad boy on the block?

    • Asp

      Good question. its is usually done as a simple fraction.

      So you start with concentrations of Pm25.
      Then you have to allocate that to various sources.
      There a simple ways to do that, and more complex methods.
      In all cases you get a estimate with a uncertainty .

      Keeping it simple:

      You have good estimate and measurements of the amount of pm25 a typical coal plant will emit.
      studied to death

  25. Alarmists & energy greenies need to be called out & held accountable for all the millions of deaths they cause by restricting energy usage, which correlates to lifespan longevity, as well as the murder of billions that can be extrapolated from their proposed solutions to climate change. The statistical derivation of deaths should have to cut both ways, & they only want to consider the downside & ignore the upside of any scheme. Alinsky’s rules are crying out for application to CAGW activists.

  26. I wonder how many Germans died from diesel car emissions? The country that gave the world the Volkswagen emissions scandal a.k.a. ‘dieselgate’.

    • Yes just wait for the law suits against Volkswagen from all the people with respiratory disease that got it only because of Volkswagon.

  27. “Needless to say, the Greenpeace-of-schist is based on (drum roll, please)… Models”

    This appears to be a trend. It reminds me of the large number of deaths reported in Puerto Rico after the latest hurricane. It seems the numbers were generated by a computer model. No body count was done.

    One thing about it: You can never take any of this CAGW/Green propaganda at face value. You have to dig down deep to find the real facts, and the facts usually turn out to tell a different story.

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