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Up to 192 fatalities every year from reading @Voxdotcom

I gave William Briggs a nudge about a piece in an online article titled How many deaths did Volkswagen's pollution scandal cause? where the author, Brad Plumer says 404 deaths are caused every year due to VW cheating a regulatory system.

William Briggs' response is that people reading the trash at is leading to up to 192 deaths every year; calculated in much the same manner. In social costs it's worse than that as it tends to kill the more intelligent Internet users.

Re: Up to 192 fatalities every year from reading @Voxdotcom

Where does Brad Plummer get his 404 death statistic from?
SO far as I am aware the only thing scientists can measure is all cause deaths from cardiovascular diseases based on life time exposure. In effect this means that NOX is a contributory factor which will result in a change in the age at death and that change is probably a matter of hours or minutes if we believe government reports for the UK, for example, where it says that particulates (all of them) are below safe levels except briefly in one or two locations on some occassions and at peak traffic times close to major arteries.
NOX is only about 40% anthropogenic and 10% of that 40% is from fossil fuels.
What is expected is a reduction which is largely going to have little valuable effect. In the Uk the major factors in reducing pollution were the change to smokeless fuels, the switch to gas fired central heating, and the relocation of factories to the new ring roads.
These limits are rarely properly defined, arrived at or justifiable in such circumstances. But to claim there are such a precise number of deaths suggests Brad Plummer needs a brain transplant.

I see he is identified as:
Brad Plumer is a senior editor at, where he oversees the site's science, energy, and environmental coverage. He was previously a reporter at the Washington Post covering climate and energy policy.

Perhaps it would help if he knew something about science and the scientific method. What he really is is a dyed in the wool activist for whom science is an unnecessary handicap to achieving his objectives.