World Health Organization Says Six Million Die As A Result Of Air Pollution

The World Health Organisation (WHO) has linked six million deaths to air pollution, saying that 9 out of 10 people in the world are breathing in polluted air.

In reference to a report which showed the statistics backing WHO’s claim, Maria Neira, the head of WHO’s department of public health and environment, told reporters that the data should make everyone more involved.

The data reveals that “92 percent of the world’s population lives in places where air quality levels exceed WHO limits”.

Although air pollution is rampant in cities, it is just as bad or even worse than people think in rural areas.

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Poorer countries are said to have dirtier air than richer countries, nonetheless, it is a global cause for concern. The data showed that the hardest hit regions were Southeast Asia and the Western Pacific region — including China, Malaysia, and Vietnam — are the hardest hit.

Six Million Die As A Result Of Air Pollution-- WHO

“It is a public health emergency,” Neira said.

“Fast action to tackle air pollution can’t come soon enough,” she added, urging governments to cut the number of vehicles on the road, improve waste management and promote clean cooking fuel.

WHO used a model which shows the air pollution spots in different countries. According to Dr Flavia Bustreo, Assistant Director General at WHO, it also “provides a baseline for monitoring progress in combating [air pollution].”

The model is based on data derived from satellite measurements, air transport models and ground station monitors for more than 3000 locations, both rural and urban

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Outdoor pollution is blamed for more than three million deaths in the world, although indoor pollution contributes to air pollution deaths, especially in poor developing countries. 90 percent of these deaths occur in low to middle-income countries.