Study finds correlation between oil production and childhood cancer

Feb 20, 2017

Credit Paul Locke / Flickr Creative Commons

Oil and natural gas operations may be linked to childhood cancer, according to a new study by the University of Colorado.

As The Denver Post reports, children who grow up near oil and gas drilling are statistically more likely to contract leukemia between the ages of five and 24. The study was peer-reviewed, and published in an online multidisciplinary journal last week.

However, Dr. Larry Wolk, the executive director of the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, was skeptical. “I don’t think the study supports the conclusion that they made,” he said.

Advocates for the oil industry criticized the findings, calling the study “an attempt to undermine energy development and jobs in Colorado.”

The scientist behind the study defended her conclusion, saying her team did the best study they could “with the data that the Colorado Health Department” provided.