The World Health Organisation has warned that exhaust fumes emitted from diesel engines can cause cancer in humans. Diesel should be categorised along with asbestos, arsenic and mustard gas claimed the WHO.
The researchers said their findings were unanimous and based on “compelling” scientific evidence and warned people to reduce exposure to diesel fumes.
Diesel cars are big sellers in Europe, where tax breaks have produced an upsurge in demand.
Dr Christopher Wild of the International Agency for Research on Cancer said: “It’s for the decision makers to weigh that evidence in the balance against the exposure that’s present in the population, the utility of diesel engines, the benefits of it, the alternative technologies, and also think about the way in which they balance that against the adverse health effects.”
What concerns scientists is that large populations all over the world are exposed to diesel fumes in everyday life.