For more than seven months, the nation's top public health agency has blocked the publication of an exhaustive federal study of environmental hazards in the eight Great Lakes states, reportedly because it contains such potentially "alarming information" as evidence of elevated infant mortality and cancer rates.
The eight states are Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin. Some Canadian territory also fell within the report's purview
According to the version of the report released today, 21 of the 26 areas of concern had elevated infant mortality rates, and 17 had elevated rates of breast cancer. The researchers mapped health data county by county and compared it with health data from other U.S. counties. It also related the health data to geographical information from two databases that track releases of certain toxic substances and pollutants.
ATSDR had planned to make its work public last July but "abruptly canceled the release of the report