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Pollution in North America decreased by 5 percent between 1995 and 2000, according to a report released today by the Commission for Environmental Cooperation, established under the North American Free Trade Agreement. In 2000, the U.S., Canada, and Mexico released 3.6 million tons of pollution. Of that, 1.5 million tons went directly into the air, water, or ground, while the remainder was sent to recycling operations (1 million) or for treatment, energy recovery, or disposal. The worst offenders were industries located in just three states (Texas, Ohio, and Pennsylvania) and one province (Ontario, Canada), which together accounted for as much as one-quarter of all North American pollution. Fourteen percent of the pollution consisted of chemicals that are known or suspected carcinogens, the CEC reported.
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