According to a report released by a US environmental organisation, three of the most polluted cities in the world are in Russia. The Blacksmith Institute released the results of an investigation into the ten most polluted places on earth on Wednesday. The organisation researched 300 sites to come up with the list; they did not rank them but said the situation in the Russian city of Dzerzhinsk is catastrophic. The city is a former Cold War era chemical weapons centre and the average life expectancy is 42 for men and 47 for women. Other cities on the list include the Ukrainian city of Chernobyl, and Kabwe, a city in Zambia's copper mining belt. The other locations were cities in developing countries with large scale mining or chemical industries. The report said a billion people in developing countries suffer from health problems caused by environmental pollution. The illnesses include cancer and lung diseases and a significantly increased chance of having a mentally retarded child.


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