WHO Report on Air Pollution in India

According to World Health Organisation (WHO) report, air pollution is killing nearly eight lakh people annually in the South East Asian Region (SEAR) with India alone accounting for over 75 per cent of the casualties caused by cardiovascular diseases and lung cancer.

Report says that 94 per cent are due to noncommunicable diseases notably cardiovascular diseases, such as stroke, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, lung cancer, and air pollution also increases the risks for acute respiratory infections.

According to report, 6,21,138 people died in India of air pollution due to Acute lower respiratory infection, Chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder (COPD), Ischemic heart disease (IHD) and Lung Cancer.

Nine out of 10 people globally are breathing poor quality air while nearly 90 per cent of air pollution related deaths occur in low and middle-income countries, with nearly two out of three occurring in WHO’s South-East Asia including India and Western Pacific regions.

The new WHO burden of disease estimates shows that 94 per cent of the premature deaths caused by air pollution are due to cardiovascular diseases, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and lung cancers.

The remaining are from acute respiratory infections in children under five years of age. The magnitude of the health impact of air pollution calls for urgent action to prevent these avoidable risks and deaths.

The report estimates population exposure to PM 2.5 at country level through a new model that relies on satellite data and ground measurements.