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Calls to boost natural gas can’t ignore fuel combustion’s deadly impacts

Then in mid-May, a new study by researchers at the University of Wisconsin at Madison found that eliminating pollution from fossil fuel combustion in power plants could avoid as many as 11,600 premature deaths in the U.S. every year, with an annual value of $132 billion. The researchers looked at five additional sectors: industrial fuel use; residential and commercial fuel use; on-road vehicles; non-road vehicles; as well as oil and gas production and refining. They found that exposure to the small particulates emitted by combustion in these six sectors combined resulted in 205,000 deaths in one year. And, due to the disparities in the siting of power plants and other facilities, the victims of this pollution are far more often low-income and people of color.