4 Jun 2009

Guam to get more pollution as a result of US military plans, says academic

3:36 pm on 4 June 2009

An American anthropologist says plans for the US military build-up on Guam are a sign that pollution on the island is set to worsen.

In a new book, Catherine Lutz claims that residents of territories which host military bases are unwitting victims of a range of environmental, social and financial impacts.

Professor Lutz says the more than 900 offshore US military posts have a long history of polluting the environment.

She says because of the US military, Guam already has a number of sites on the US Super Fund list for the country's most toxic places.

"There's been very little clean up. So many people on Guam are as concerned as much about this as some of the possibilities for crime (posed by the military build-up). That is to say they have very high cancer rates in certain of the cancers and people are concerned that maybe the reason why is because they've been exposed over all these years to the kinds of material that the military has been using, which include many known carcinogens."

Catherine Lutz