BLOG SURF: Air pollution

The most common causes of child deaths in low- and middle-income countries used to be diarrhea, pneumonia, and malaria. The first two are actually preventable.

But these health hazards are being quickly replaced by a far worse, less manageable threat – air pollution.

Today, up to 300 million children live in areas mostly urban centers with extremely toxic levels of air pollution, and approximately 2 billion children reside in areas where pollution levels exceed the minimum air quality standards set by the World Health Organization, stated in UNICEF’s latest report on the issue.

These are global figures, but it’s easy to assume that two-thirds of the children exposed to bad air quality live in Asia, where the world’s most polluted mega cities are located.

If you believe that air pollution causes only respiratory diseases in children, and that your children are safe as long as they don’t develop these illnesses, you are wrong.