Published: Thu, May 03, 2018
Culture | By Glenn Strickland

9 out of 10 people globally breathe toxins

9 out of 10 people globally breathe toxins

The Centre has made "serious" efforts to fight air pollution and the 2017 air quality data for fine particulate matter PM2.5 has shown improvement over the previous year, the Environment Ministry said today, after a World Health Organisation (WHO) report listed 14 Indian cities among the world's 20 most polluted. "Updated estimations reveal an alarming death toll of 7 million people every year caused by ambient (outdoor) and household air pollution", the report reads.

The air quality database for 2016 was released by World Health Organization on Wednesday and showed that the north Indian industrial city of Kanpur had the highest-measured levels of PM2.5, or small particulate matter. Dust, deforestation and waste burning are other sources.

DOZENS of United Kingdom towns and cities are suffer from unsafe levels of air pollution, a new report has suggested - causing clean air campaigners to urge to the government to take action. An additional 1,000 cities have been newly added to the list since 2016, which shows that more cities are willing to make changes to reduce air pollution.

In the latest World Health Organization study, Kanpur tops the list of most polluted cities in India followed by Faridabad, Varanasi, Gaya, Patna, Delhi, Lucknow, Agra, Muzaffarpur, Srinagar, Gurgaon, Jaipur, Patiala and Jodhpur. The country's shutdown of coal-fired power plants as part of its transition to a low-carbon economy drove air pollution to record lows in 2016.

An estimated 3 billion people or more than 40 percent of the world's population still have no access to suitable cooking devices.

"Cleaning up the air we breathe will help prevent NCDs, particularly among women and vulnerable groups such as children, those already ill and the elderly", Poonam Khetrapal Singh, regional director, WHO Southeast Asia, said.

BP profits surge by 71 percent in Q1
The company's production rose 6% in the first quarter compared with a year ago. Shareholder dividend stayed at 10 cents per share.

Ford decides to not to invest in traditional sedans in North America
Ford said its net income in the quarter was up almost 9.5%, to US$1.74bn, or US$0.43 a share, from US$1.59bn, or US$0.40 a share. Hackett, 63, is choosing a route similar to the one Fiat Chrysler Automobiles used to pass Ford in North American profitability.

Palestinian teen dies of wounds ififth week of Friday protests
Palestinians carry a wounded man during a protest at the Gaza Strip's border with Israel, Friday, April 27, 2018. IDF soldiers opened fire, killing three and wounding hundreds.

The least polluted air tends to be found in more developed, richer countries whose governments have taken steps to tackle what British lawmakers previously called a "national health emergency".

The WHO, in its report, mentioned central government's Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala YojanaIndia targets to reach 80 million households by 2020. In such a scenario, there is a need for stringent measures to curb air pollution.

In its latest report, the WHO also stated that nine in every 10 people in the world breathe polluted air.

A study, jointly conducted by a team of scientists from Pune-based Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology (IITM) and University of Kashmir, had revealed that pollution in Srinagar hits risky levels during winter months as the air carries five times more tiny particulate matter than the permissible limit, with the experts terming it a worrying development.

Europe has the highest number of places reporting data. "The good news is that we are seeing more and more governments increasing commitments to monitor and reduce air pollution as well as more global action from the health sector and other sectors like transport, housing and energy".

The publication of WHO's findings comes ahead of the first Global Conference on Air Pollution and Health, which is due to run from 30 October to 1 November in Geneva, where the United Nations agency aims to push for improved air quality and combat the harmful effects of climate change.

Like this: