Researchers, Lawmakers Cry Foul After Harvard Quietly Edits Study Suggesting Pollution Leads To More COVID Deaths

From The Daily Caller

Daily Caller News Foundation logo

Chris White Tech Reporter May 03, 2020 2:02 PM ET

  • Maryland Rep. Andy Harris wants the Environmental Protection Agency to review a Harvard University study suggesting pollution could create an 8% increase in the United States’s coronavirus death rate. 
  • One top critic of the study told the Daily Caller News Foundation that the university’s research is unfounded and relies on faulty modeling and testing. 
  • The university’s researchers initially claimed that people in certain areas of the country are 15% more likely to die of the virus, but quietly edited the study to dramatically change the nature of the study’s findings.

Republican Rep. Andy Harris of Maryland is asking the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to conduct a rigorous review of a Harvard University study associating high pollution levels to an increase in coronavirus deaths as researchers criticize the researchers’ findings.

EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler should conduct an investigation into the study, which suggests a link between pollution and higher rates of coronavirus deaths, Harris wrote to Wheeler on Saturday in a letter obtained by the Daily Caller News Foundation.

Harris addressed the letter to Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar as well.

Harris’s letter refers to a Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health study, published April 4, concluding that an increase in long-term exposure to particulate matter leads to an 8% increase in the coronavirus death rate.

Areas with elevated levels of pollution are likely to experience higher death rates during the pandemic, the research claimed.

The study initially claimed that people in areas with high levels of pollution are 15% more likely to die but added an April 24 clarification that reads: “We have revised our finding as that an increase of 1 μg/m3 in PM2.5 is associated with an 8% increase in the COVID-19 death rate.”

The revision noted that the study changed after researchers included “confounding factors” impacting the virus.

Harvard’s research received extensive media attention with The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Guardian and the Los Angeles Times publishing articles highlighting the study’s original claims.

The outlets have not yet updated their reporting to reflect the April 24 clarification posted on the school’s website. (RELATED: Trump’s EPA Makes Big Changes To Rule Banning ‘Secret Science,’ Obama-Era Officials Rage)

“It is incumbent on you to accurately communicate the best available scientific understanding of the virus and the factors that may influence patient outcomes, not only to ensure American citizens are not misinformed, but also to enable proper allocation of resources,” Harris wrote in the letter to Wheeler. Researchers have come out of the woodwork to criticize the study.

The study, which has yet to be peer reviewed, relies on a “statistical model that has not been tested and verified as yielding accurate predictions,” Tony Cox, who chairs the EPA’s Clean Air Scientific Advisory Committee, told the DCNF.

He and other researchers say spikes in deaths in certain areas were more likely a reflection of where those regions were on the virus curve rather than pollution.

Cities also have higher levels of air pollution, not to mention they have higher death rates from COVID-19 for reasons unrelated to pollution.

There are other factors that contribute to the virus’s spread. States and counties have adopted different social distancing guidelines, with states like Georgia adopting lax efforts while California adopted strict mitigation policies.

Neither the EPA, or Harvard’s school of public health has not responded to the DCNF’s request for comment about the clarification added to the study or the criticisms levelled against the research.

The study only notes an association between pollution and the virus, which originated in China, according to Stanley Young, a member of the EPA’s Science Advisory Board.

“This is the proverbial butterfly in China causing a tornado in Alabama, and generally the world doesn’t work that way,” Young, a statistician, told the Washington Examiner.

“The paper is written in a way that strongly implies cause and effect,” he said before saying the study’s authors “could have been a lot more circumspect than that.”

Environmentalists believe President Donald Trump’s environmental rollbacks could lead to more deaths on this front. The EPA relaxed Obama-era rules, reversing the legal underpinning of mercury limits for coal-fired plants, as well as proposed to keep levels for limits on fine particle pollution.

The virus has killed nearly 24,000 in New York and more than 67,000 across the country.

0 0 votes
Article Rating
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Michael Jankowski
May 3, 2020 6:08 pm

With the uncertainty in the factual numbers of COVID-19 cases, it’s amazing they could come up with such supposedly conclusive evidence.

Or stick to such evidence as their projected increase in mortality rate as dropped in half already.

Curious George
Reply to  Michael Jankowski
May 4, 2020 7:41 am

Is this study just a pollution? No, they got paid for it. Call it a way of life.

David blackall
Reply to  Michael Jankowski
May 5, 2020 6:45 pm

Please correct me if I am wrong, I read the following paper as evidence that the virus did not come from the wet market. Rather a laboratory is the source and so this is the best paper to explain how COVID 19 Coronavirus developed.

I quote: “. . . . to examine the emergence potential (that is, the potential to infect humans) of circulating bat CoVs, we built a chimeric virus encoding a novel, zoonotic CoV spike protein—from the RsSHC014-CoV sequence that was isolated from Chinese horseshoe bats —in the context of the SARS-CoV mouseadapted backbone. The hybrid virus allowed us to evaluate the ability of the novel spike protein to cause disease independently of other necessary adaptive mutations in its natural backbone. Using this approach, we characterized CoV infection mediated by the SHC014 spike protein in primary human airway cells and in vivo, and tested the efficacy of available immune therapeutics against SHC014-CoV. Together, the strategy translates metagenomics data to help predict and prepare for future emergent viruses.”

Leo Morgan
Reply to  David blackall
May 6, 2020 6:55 am

David, thanks for that. As I read your article, the laboratory virus was mouse-adapted; specifically not suited to humans. It was changed from the virus already circulating in horseshoe bats, which therefore remains the likely source of the virus.
Yes, they did rederive the original, which creates the possibility that it was released by human error, but did you note that the vast majority of the researchers were American? The point of the article you cite was to warn against the strong possibility the virus would come at us from the animal population in China, the fact that researchers investigating that possibility could have released it is a far cry from concluding they did release it.

Bro. Steve
May 3, 2020 6:13 pm

The pollution ALONE in China will kill people. Don’t need no stinkin’ virus.

Pat from kerbob
Reply to  Bro. Steve
May 3, 2020 6:43 pm

I think that may be one reason for the low reported death rate there, assume the reported numbers are correct
Pollution already killed all the weak sand susceptible

Mark Smith
Reply to  Bro. Steve
May 3, 2020 7:22 pm

Except it doesn’t, assuming you are about EPA pollution There was a place in India with extreme pollution you could see the pollution but no increased death rate.

Reply to  Mark Smith
May 3, 2020 9:55 pm

That, or natural selection has already eliminated all the weak people.

Reply to  Mark Smith
May 4, 2020 7:39 am

There was a time in London where the pollution killed people.

John Dawson
Reply to  MarkW
May 5, 2020 12:43 pm

I am old enough to remember such “pea-soupers” in the mid 50s in north London, when I was a small child. The primary cause was the burning of coal in domestic fireplaces, for heating people’s homes. The resultant fog, called “smog”, was yellow-green from the SO2 and NO2.

I understand there were lots of deaths, especially in cities, and this brought about the clean air act which banned burning coal at home. Coke (the black kind) was OK.

Pat Frank
May 3, 2020 6:23 pm

SS Young, et al (2017) Air quality and acute deaths in California, 2000–2012


• California air quality and daily deaths are analyzed, 2000–2012.
• An extensive sensitivity analysis is done; 78,624 models are computed.
• No association of acute deaths with levels of PM2.5 or ozone is found.
• The data set and analysis code are made publicly available.
• With no association, causation is called into question for California.

So, actual data across thirteen years, >2M deaths, and over 37,000 exposure days across CA, shows no link between mortality and PM 2.5 levels.

Nevertheless, Harvard researchers, using models, report that, “an increase of 1 μg/m^3 in PM2.5 is associated with an 8% increase in the COVID-19 death rate.


Reply to  Pat Frank
May 4, 2020 7:42 am

I’ve never heard of a case where PM2.5 existed in an atmosphere without also having a host of other “pollutants”. How can they be so sure that the extra deaths were caused by PM2.5?

Reply to  Pat Frank
May 4, 2020 2:52 pm

This is the link to the article you mentioned:
You can see there how many times this article was cited: exactly zero.
This article is solid. They will make all the data available.
No effect of PM2.5 or Ozone.

Pat Frank
Reply to  Pat Frank
May 5, 2020 9:20 pm

rd50, yours appears to be a follow-up study.

I didn’t know about it, thanks.

Richard (the cynical one)
May 3, 2020 6:23 pm

There is no significant pollution of any type now that CO2 has been properly demonized. To worry about particulate matter or any other distraction from carbonhype dilutes and diffuses the cause. We cannot allow that. CO2 is pollution and nothing else, and pollution is CO2 and nothing else. Pay attention, class!

May 3, 2020 6:53 pm

The revision noted that the study changed after researchers included “confounding factors” impacting the virus.

When I was a pup, we were warned about spurious correlations in our first statistics course. It’s a big deal. Is it even possible to take a stats course which doesn’t prominently warn about the pitfalls that await the unwary number cruncher? link

Some folks, on discovering a formula in a book, can’t wait to apply it no matter how inappropriate it may be. James Hansen’s kindergarten feedback analysis comes immediately to mind.

May 3, 2020 7:00 pm

“After Harvard Quietly Edits…”
Well, of course, Harvard didn’t edit it. The authors (who have appointments at Harvard) posted an update to their paper. And it wasn’t “quietly edited”. It is a notice in red, right at the top.

Reply to  Nick Stokes
May 3, 2020 7:38 pm

So when the media that broadcasted the original paper corrected the misinformation it was “in red, right at the top”? This is a typical drive by misinformation bomb that garners media attention without journalism scrutiny. They are constantly dropped, never properly corrected, and remembered by some as fact. One description of propaganda.

Reply to  markl
May 3, 2020 7:46 pm

A failure by the press to update could be rightly criticised. But it wasn’t due to “quiet editing” by Harvard.

Reply to  Nick Stokes
May 3, 2020 8:03 pm

Nice bloviation.

Reply to  markl
May 4, 2020 12:01 am

I bloviate your bloviation.

Patrick MJD
Reply to  markl
May 4, 2020 5:24 am

“Greg May 4, 2020 at 12:01 am”

Are you pooh poohing his pooh pooh? Or are you just pooh poohing?

Reply to  markl
May 4, 2020 8:04 am

Nick made a valid point. Sadly some people hear think that whenever Nick Stokes makes a comment they can post some brainless canned internet response as a register of their disapproval without having any valid point to make.

So yes, I’m pooh poohing his mindless pooh poohing.

I thought the meaning was clear enough.

Michael Jankowski
Reply to  markl
May 4, 2020 10:19 am

There are lots of grammar Nazis out there, but Nick is the Hitler of phrasing and word-choice Nazis.

Bryan A
Reply to  Nick Stokes
May 3, 2020 10:33 pm

Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain quietly editing the already released, un-reviewed, media hyped paper

Reply to  Bryan A
May 4, 2020 12:08 am

The problem is biases media outlets with an agenda giving prominent coverage to an as yet unreviewed paper. There was no pressing reason why this could not have at least waited until the due process of PR was completed and the paper was actually published.

The ONLY reason they do this is that it fits their 2.5PM agenda , which is just another tentacle of their anti-fossil fuel crusade.

Reply to  Nick Stokes
May 4, 2020 1:57 am

It is the university’s responsibility how they are reported in the press. Someone could teach them how to find the major press outlets they were the reported and the researchers should have notified the press of the change and made them update it.

Reply to  Nick Stokes
May 4, 2020 1:59 am

We obviously both agree that the press are useless, but iy is definitely the responsibility of the university to make sure they are reported correctly at all times.

Michael Jankowski
Reply to  Nick Stokes
May 4, 2020 10:27 am

Harvard did “quiet editing” here…looks like they just removed any numbers and let the conclusions, ballyhoo, and proclamations stand.
“*This article was updated on May 4, 2020 based on an updated analysis from the researchers using data through April 22.”

But just to be clear, by “Harvard” I mean a representative of the university or someone paid to write and post the article and not the bricks, mortar, grass, sidewalks, plumbing, etc., of Harvard University itself.

Reply to  Nick Stokes
May 4, 2020 12:22 am

Thanks Nick. I was also wondering how publishing the update in exactly the same place as the original pre-print copy could be described as “quietly editing”. Indeed it is likely that this change was brought about they the on-going peer-review process.

The ONLY problem here is BS merchants like The Guardian and the rest of media eco-disinformation cabal giving prominent coverage to a pre-print article instead of at least waiting for PR and publication.

I see no reason to criticise the authors for the pre-print or the modification.

However, Harvard are clearly on a mission to link COVID-19 to air pollution. Look at their “Latest News” column to the right of the article about the paper:

Latest News

New Research Links Air Pollution to Higher Coronavirus Death Rates
Poor air quality has been linked to Covid-19 impacts. Trump’s EPA is still limiting pollution restrictions
Massachusetts communities with dirty air are coronavirus hotspots
Five ways that Trump is undermining environmental protections under the cover of coronavirus
How air pollution exacerbates Covid-19
Air pollution linked to raised Covid-19 death risk

In giving this unpublished paper prominence in their “latest news”, they ARE inviting agenda driven journos to pick it up prematurely and give its unreviewed content maximum publicity.

Reply to  Greg
May 4, 2020 5:22 am

Same old Bull Shit. Different day. It is a never ending stream of misinformation that drives the greens. Without it, their movement would be dead.

Jan E Christoffersen
Reply to  Greg
May 4, 2020 6:36 am

I read somewhere recently that the virus could be spread by aerosols other that fine water droplets exhaled by humans. Could this be so, including PM 2.5 dust particles?

Reply to  Jan E Christoffersen
May 4, 2020 8:12 am

I don’ t think they are suggesting PM 2.5 is actively transmitting sars-cov-2 , it is more that it is weakening people’s lungs and making them more susceptible.

There was even the insane “study” saying how many million man-days of lost labour had been gained by lower pollution due to shut down, while ignoring the billions of man-days lost because of the virus.

It also talked of “lives saved”, where they actually should be citing a reduction in lives shortened by a few statistical days.

Utter BS, of course, like the whole PM2.5 scam. The fake problem to replace fake climate change.

john harmsworth
Reply to  Jan E Christoffersen
May 4, 2020 12:07 pm

And the veil of witchcraft that surrounds every private enterprise. I’m pretty sure I heard that, too.

john harmsworth
Reply to  Jan E Christoffersen
May 4, 2020 12:10 pm

The notion that a species that spent the last 2 million years evolving around camp fires and out in nature with pollen, spores, bacteria and molds should somehow be only capable of living safely in a clean room seems just a little unlikely to me.

Reply to  Greg
May 5, 2020 8:00 am

Greg, I mostly agree but “I see no reason to criticise the authors for the pre-print or the modification.”

Who was it that notified the press about this study before peer review, publication and PR review? Someone had to release the information to the press or the relevant news articles would not have been written. Was it the authors? Obviously not a certainty but highly likely they did to promote their work and grab some headlines.

Reply to  Nick Stokes
May 4, 2020 11:00 am

Exactly Nick, and in that very prominent notice they pointed out that the change resulted from additional data. The original paper was submitted on April 4th and the revision included additional data up to April 22nd, in that time the number of deaths increased from ~12,000 to ~47,000, i.e. about a factor of 4.
They also indicated what other factors were taken into effect:
“In the main analysis, we adjusted by 20 potential confounding factors including population size, age distribution, population density, time since the beginning of the outbreak, time since state’s issuance of stay-at-home order, hospital beds, number of individuals tested, weather, and socioeconomic and behavioral variables such as obesity and smoking. We included a random intercept by state to account for potential correlation in counties within the same state. We conducted more than 68 additional sensitivity analyses.”

May 3, 2020 7:02 pm

Scientists with imagination. Isn’t it wonderful?

May 3, 2020 7:06 pm

Leftists love to use the logical fallacy of post hoc ergo propter hoc to move their agendas forward..

Since 2000, the annualized rate of PM2.5 pollution has been cut 39%…

Leftist hacks at Harvard know the real reasons Wuhan flu deaths are higher in large cities are because: much higher population densities, filthy public trains and buses, and NYC politicians forcing elderly-care facilities to accept 65+ patients with Wuhan Flu rather then keeping them at hospitals…

Politics + SCIENCE!!(TM)= -Politics…

Daniel J Hawkins
Reply to  SAMURAI
May 4, 2020 8:42 am

Also, since there is a link between Vitamin D deficiency and COVID-19 susceptibility, and since cities tend to have higher percentages of black inhabitants, and blacks tend to more chronic Vitamin D deficiency than whites, you’ll find higher rates of COVID-19 mortality. And cities are where pollution, of whatever stripe, is generally more prevalent. Raise your hand, everyone who thinks they took this potential confounding factor into account. Anyone, anyone?

Doc Chuck
May 3, 2020 7:07 pm

OK, let me see if I get the drift here. Their mathematical models indicated an aggravating particulate air pollution factor must surely be an added lethal burden for those at greatest risk for severe pulmonary consequences of their CoVid19 infection, but afterward upon their further consideration they decided it would be prudent to revise that hazard level by downward by oh say nearly half the original estimate. That’s as revealing of the dependable accuracy of the whole process of their assessment as I could possibly ask for. And where have we heard the likes of such gross revisions of model outputs lately? Next sciency study please!

Doc Chuck
Reply to  Doc Chuck
May 3, 2020 9:37 pm

Furthermore, I don’t know why those dang teaching assistants of mine decades ago were so focused on our our registering very carefully observed measurements in those chemistry and physics laboratory notebooks that we were to be in considerable part graded upon, and which were not thus alterable in retrospect for better performance than a very few % error. Didn’t they foresee that science would eventually be practiced by mathematical algorithm instead, thereby saving a great deal of expense in reagents and laboratory apparatus, not to mention leg work?

john harmsworth
Reply to  Doc Chuck
May 4, 2020 12:30 pm

Pretty soon we’ll have AI creating models that show what future models would show, thus relieving us of the requirement for any actual research whatsoever. Then we can make it illegal to do research . I think the Chinese are pretty well there already. I know they’ve decided that research on the origins of CCP virus is a punishable offence. It’s just their way of making sure people don’t waste their time, I guess.
The PPM2.5 is the same kind of thing. It’s been decided, therefore, research is counterproductive. Reactionary, even! Hell, it’s as bad as CO2!

john harmsworth
Reply to  Doc Chuck
May 4, 2020 12:22 pm

Oh! Oh! I know this one!

May 3, 2020 7:08 pm

Some of the hardest hit areas have heavy pollution (NYC, Wuhan, Lombardi) and the idea that air pollution might exacerbate lung infections certainly makes a good deal of medical sense and is not refuted by this study.

Now are all deaths due to Air pollution? No, but air pollution probably does not help. I am sure there may be other factors. All 3 cities/areas mentioned above have recently rolled out 5 G which has never been tested. Perhaps this contributes in some way by harming immune function but its certainly not the only cause. The biggest cause seems to be age and other illnesses like heart, kidney and lung diseases, diabetes, etc.

Fabio Capezzuoli
Reply to  Pft
May 4, 2020 12:34 am

Seriously, are you peddling the 5G angle? That’s silly.

Reply to  Pft
May 4, 2020 7:47 am

5G has been tested.
A lot of people like to assume that unless the bad stuff they fear has been found, then it hasn’t been tested.

May 3, 2020 7:20 pm

Predicting the future is always so messy. Why don’t they just predict stock prices? It is easy to check the results and the “scientists” could make a lot of money if they are correct.
Why don’t academics at universities do any real science any more?

Mike Dubrasich
May 3, 2020 8:11 pm

In January WUWT posted a 3-part essay by Kip Hansen entitled Secret Science Under Attack (use the NEW! Improved search capability in the sidebar to find them).

The gist of the essay was discussion of the Harvard Six Cities study and the reliance of the EPA upon their findings regarding PM2.5, and the bogosity of those findings, the numerous refutations, and finally a Trumpian order to open up and make transparent the EPA’s process of science review.

The NY Times wrote scathing editorials lambasting the EPA and Trump for “weaken[ing] the scientific underpinnings of policymaking.” Actually the opposite was the case: transparency improves science.

But the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health PM2.5 researchers didn’t get the memo. In April they pumped out another bogus PM2.5 study claiming their favorite gremlin, PM2.5, was contributing to Covid19 deaths.

It is comforting to see the widespread condemnation (thumbs up to Rep. Andy Harris) of the paper and it’s apparent “revision”. Plenty of folks are tired of Harvard’s sci-chicanery. The Ivy Leaguers are free to blow smoke, but the rest of the country should not inhale it. In particular (particulate?) the EPA should reject the study or expose it to the choking criticism it deserves.

May 3, 2020 8:14 pm

Pollution universally leads to more death. It isn’t just Covid19 that become deadlier.

Look at the effects of tobacco byproducts…

Reply to  Prjindigo
May 3, 2020 9:44 pm

Funny but Andorra has a significantly lower average cvd-19 mortality (per capita) than the global average. Yet Andorra has among the highest average smoking rates in the world.

Andorrans are also among the longest lived people on the planet as well.

Don’t tell that to the anti-smoking mob. They’ll be at your door waving torches and pitchforks.

Peter Tari
Reply to  Klem
May 4, 2020 12:26 pm

I do know nothing about Andorran smoking habits, but – according to Worldometer – they have the third highest Covid-19 deaths number per million people all over the world.
Maybe I was right to quit smoking some 30 years ago.

Steve Reddish
Reply to  Prjindigo
May 3, 2020 9:54 pm

To show that all pollution out there in the environment causes death, you point to an example of deliberately inhaled toxins?

john harmsworth
Reply to  Prjindigo
May 4, 2020 12:15 pm

C)2 has been labelled a pollutant. Are you saying we should stop inhaling CO2?

May 3, 2020 8:18 pm

Today’s air is vastly cleaner than it was years ago. In 1940 40% of U.S. homes were heated with coal. If the junk scientists were right about the effects of air pollution everyone in 1940 would have dropped dead.

Craig from Oz
Reply to  Tim
May 3, 2020 9:05 pm

Give them another 25 years and they will be able to claim they were 100% correct.

Snark aside should we bring up the observation that to avoid crippling electricity prices many nominally First World citizens have returned to burning wood for heat.

Those lovely ‘warm’ looking yellow/orange flames? Yeah, that is the unburnt particles glowing and in many cases, literal carbon pollution.

john harmsworth
Reply to  Craig from Oz
May 4, 2020 12:40 pm

But isn’t wood a “renewable”? I know they’re burning it like crazy n Europe and those guys are solid GREEN.

Chris Hanley
May 3, 2020 8:56 pm

The paper concludes:
“A small increase in long-term exposure to PM2.5 leads to a large increase in the COVID-19 death rate. Despite inherent limitations of the ecological study design, our results underscore the importance of continuing to enforce existing air pollution regulations to protect human health both during and after the COVID-19 crisis”.
An 8% increase in COVID-19 death rate is not “large” and “leads to” is ‘affirming the consequent’ as it assumes that the finding of an increased death rate, if valid, has only one cause to account for it when there are many reasons as mentioned above, in fact PM2.5 may not be a factor at all.

john harmsworth
Reply to  Chris Hanley
May 4, 2020 12:33 pm

Any mention of the length of time the deceased had lived in that environment? Any quantifcation of total exposure? Any evaluation of other risk factors?
Didn’t think so.

May 3, 2020 9:51 pm

If pollution was believed to be a factor of Covid contamination or death, people would not have used data from China, ever. They would never have asked President Trump to take any alert from China. They don’t believe that. It’s a HOAX. It’s another impeachment like hoax. President Trump was right.

May 3, 2020 10:05 pm

You would only know if PM2.5 levels lead to coronavirus deaths if you knew the particulate levels in the residences and hospital rooms of the patients, the actual percentage of people who have been exposed to the virus in each area, which therapies were given to those who died and those who did not, etc.
Maybe you can decently measure such things over an entire population (i.e. do people in similar cities have different death rates when one is highly polluted and one is not), but with such a tiny sample of people, where the infection rate is very different in different places – and is in fact a known unknown – this study is, well… just stupid.

It seems that academia has lost all sense of proportion or scale of things.
Perhaps it is the giving of PhD’s in more and more specialized areas that causes this.

Mark Luhman
May 3, 2020 10:29 pm

Funny here in Phoenix we have some air pollution problems yet nothing near New York deaths to COVID by multiple of about a 1000. Funny we also don’t have a population density of 27,000 per square mile.

Stephan Fuelling
May 3, 2020 10:49 pm

All pollution may not be created equal. The other day I suddenly asked myself if the 9-11 event may have adversely affected the population of New York City such that they were now at higher risk with a Coronavirus infection. I have read that people exposed to the dust of the collapsing buildings had developed severe health problems. Any connections?

Reply to  Stephan Fuelling
May 4, 2020 5:20 am

Wasn’t that more asbestos dust from the insulation of all the crashed and burnt steel beams? Asbestos air pollution would be in a category of its own and would cause more immediate problems such as some of the cancer that the firemen and emergency services suffered in the years after 911. But who knows if some lower residual amount makes C-19 worse now. This will undoubtedly be studied in more detail over time. I would assume all accumulated particulate pollution in the deep lungs would be an impairment to any future lung compromised situation such as pneumonia from C-19.

Robert of Ottawa
May 3, 2020 11:00 pm

a “statistical model that has not been tested and verified as yielding accurate predictions,”

Says it all really.

Rod Evans
May 4, 2020 12:33 am

This study falls into the same camp of statistical nonsense that the absolute correlation between shark attacks and ice cream sales, resides in. We know sharks love ice cream just look at the data….
Only academics who think the people outside their campus are dumb, would push such worthless study forward.

May 4, 2020 12:39 am

Prohibit wois heating to clean air !

Reply to  Krishna Gans
May 4, 2020 1:31 am

Sorry, wood heating.
Don’t like typing on my phone…

May 4, 2020 1:07 am

Activists + science => Lysenkoism.

Patrick MJD
Reply to  jorgekafkazar
May 4, 2020 5:22 am

Activists + junk science = lew paper.

Paul C
May 4, 2020 3:50 am

So, if we can work through the figures for Wuhan, the PM2.5 air quality index for December 2019 and January 2020 looks to average well over 150, so taking 150 as a conservative value translates to 55.4 micrograms/m3.
The good air quality index maximum (50) translates to 12 micrograms/m3 (New York is normally below that threshold).
So, being generous, and only counting the 43.4 microgram/m3 excess PM2.5 * 8% results in a 347% increase in the COVID-19 death rate.
No wonder the CCP say there is no COVID-19 left in Wuhan if everyone already died.

Paul C
May 4, 2020 4:11 am

It looks to me that they dug a hole – then kept digging. The revision of 8% for 1 microgram per m3 is a massive increase over just saying 15% for high levels of PM2.5. Just a moving from 0 to 12 microgram within the GOOD air quality range results in 96% increase in COVID-19 death rate.

Tim Gorman
May 4, 2020 5:25 am

As Pat Frank pointed out earlier this is a “snapshot” study that is useless for projecting anything. Consider an alternative: All fossil fuel burning is immediately banned. Three months later the death rate has soared to unbelievable levels. Conclusion? Clean air is deadly. It causes starvation and mass murder. It causes infant mortality to rise by 80% and it causes lifespans to fall from teh 70’s to the 20’s.

This is the kind of result that you get from mathematicians and statisticians who only look at numbers wth absolutely no understanding of the reality behind them. It’s psuedo-science based on models that do nothing but number matching.

May 4, 2020 7:37 am

Interesting how they assume it must be PM2.5, and not one of the hundreds of other “pollutants” that are also present.

May 4, 2020 8:11 am

Particulate Emissions – is the proposed ban on private Diesel cars Useless?
Bristol is set to become the first UK city to ban diesel cars in a bid to improve air quality. Under the plans, all privately owned diesel vehicles will be barred from entering a clean air zone in the city centre every day between 7am and 3pm by March 2021.
YET, and without computer models.
Comparisons of Particulate emissions before and after UK Lockdown suggest that motor vehicles are not the problem as there is very little change before and after despite a near 80% reduction in vehicle movements in Bristol.

Paul C
Reply to  Adrian Kerton
May 4, 2020 8:51 am

Well I do seem to recall that Bristol is fairly close to th Bristol Channel, and that prevailing winds will tend to be from offshore. One of the largest sources of pm2.5 is salt spray from the sea, which probably has a beneficial effect, as salt with a bit of moisture still present is likely to stick to any actual particulate pollution, and deposit the clumps on surfaces. Any salt breathed into the lungs will simply dissolve in the mucus, so is at worst benign. Really defining particles as pollution without considering what the particle is does not make sense. Next they will be telling us that an innocuous gas such as CO2 is a pollutant 🙂

Reply to  Adrian Kerton
May 4, 2020 11:12 pm

I do remember some time ago, that Steve Malloy [ ] exposed human experiments by the EPA and a couple of Ivy League universities where they pump ‘straight’ diesel exhaust into their subjects none of whom died from PM2.5 … one old lady had existing respiratory and heart issues ans had to go to hospital.

May 4, 2020 9:53 am

The increase in galactic radiation can be considered as air pollution because the number of mutations in nature will increase.
comment image

Rudolf Huber
May 4, 2020 2:15 pm

More models, more assumptions, more opinions and the same flimsy “could lead to” assertions. People read that stuff and take it seriously. And they never ask if there is even a smidgen of factual evidence behind those claims. Thats how it works in the green mafia. Goebbels would have been proud of such subversive propaganda.

May 8, 2020 12:28 pm

I think that scientists are trained to give the cure for covid-19, but we must be very clear that a cure could not be possible until September, since a series of steps must be taken, such as animal testing, to see that it works in them. after that see the perfect or balanced amount to then be tested on humans and see the reactions in them, the best cure now is the voluntary quarantine in my mind.

%d bloggers like this:
Verified by MonsterInsights