Study shows air pollution linked to high risk of infant mortality

The Environmental Health Perspectives journal published a study in which researchers found areas with higher levels of air pollution had more babies born with low birth weights. Although it is unknown why exactly babies are born with low birth weights in areas with poor air quality, scientists have found enough evidence to confidently piece the two together.

It has been shown babies born with a low birth weight have a higher risk of mortality. Infant mortality can be linked to biological, environmental and behavioral factors. The United States has one of the highest infant mortality rates. In 2009, the U.S. averaged 6.7 deaths per 1,000 live births.

Over the past two years in Northeast Florida, the infant mortality rates have improved significantly but the racial disparity has widened.