Cancer rate investigated in village near Shell Moerdijk plant
The Public Health Service is launching an investigation into the cancer rate in the Brabant village of Klundert, near the Shell Moerdijk plant. Though there is no hard figures yet, most doctors feel that the cancer rate in the village is unusually high.
"It happens very often here. And that gives us food for fought. We would like to know if our feelings are true", GP Jula-Louise Vladar said to Omroep Brabant. Vladar diagnosed seven cases of cancer in one week.
The first goal for the statistical investigation is to find out whether there are actually more cases of cancer in the village than in the rest of the Netherlands. If this turns out to be the case, the investigation should show why that is.
Many Klundert residents already know who to blame - Shell Moerdijk, according to the broadcaster. "If you see what enters the air here through the industry in terms of substances. And that is only the things we see", one resident said to Omroep Brabant. Early this month it was revealed that about 25 tons of toxic gas ethylene oxide leaked into the the atmosphere from the plant.
Moerdijk mayor Jack Klijs, who ordered the investigation, thinks that the residents should not jump to conclusions. "You also have to look at where Brabant is located in Europe, close to Rotterdam, Antwerp and the Ruhr area. I think it is all more complex than people think."