Air pollution is the new tobacco says WHO Head

Delhi Air Pollution Rising Vehicular Emission a Major Contributor in Deteriorating Air Quality in NCR

Delhi Air Pollution Rising Vehicular Emission a Major Contributor in Deteriorating Air Quality in NCR

Air pollution is stunting children brains and affecting their health in more ways than was previously suspected, the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Monday.

Figures published by the World Health Organization today (29 October) suggest that around 93% of children aged under 15 are breathing air that is potentially risky to their health.

An overall Air Quality Index of 348 was recorded which falls in the very poor category, according to data of the Central Pollution Control Board.

"Although air pollution is a global problem, the burden of disease attributable to particulate matter in the air is heaviest in low and middle-income countries (LMICs), particularly in the African, South-East Asia, Eastern Mediterranean and Western Pacific regions", the report said. A report released by the World Health Organisation (WHO) on Monday said almost 6,00,000 children were killed globally by acute lower respiratory infections triggered by air pollution in 2016.

The WHO has previously addressed this kind of indoor pollution, calling air pollution a gendered issue which disproportionately affects women and children.

One reason why children are particularly vulnerable to the effects of air pollution is that they breathe more rapidly than adults and so absorb more pollutants.

The Copenhagen-based agency premature deaths across Europe in 2015 down to air pollution mostly resulted from tiny airborne particles known as PM2.5.

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"But there are many straight-forward ways to reduce emissions of risky pollutants", Neira said. Ten areas in Delhi recorded severe pollution level.

Five to 10 million asthma emergency room visits every year (4 to 9 per cent of total global asthma ER visits) were linked to fine particulate matter, small particles of pollution that can lodge deep in the lung's airway tubes. State-owned System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting And Research (SAFAR) which monitors pollution levels has predicted severe air quality in New Delhi in the next two days.

Delhi is now the second most polluted major city in the world, according to air quality tracker AirVisual, second only to Lahore in Pakistan. Children are affected before they are even born, the report found.

The EEA study also revealed that the highest concentrations of PM2.5 are in northern Italy, Poland, the Balkans and Turkey.

Meanwhile, better waste management can reduce the amount of waste that is burned and thereby reducing community air pollution, while the exclusive use of clean technologies and fuels for household cooking, heating and lighting can drastically improve the air quality within homes and in the surrounding community.

Delhi BJP president Manoj Tiwari Monday asked the party-ruled municipal corporations to step in to tackle the rising air pollution in the city as the AAP government has "failed" to take effective measures.

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