How Air Pollution Is Killing Ecosystems

Pollution has proven quite detrimental to human health, wildlife survival, and ecosystems generally, additionally it has also contributed adversely to climate change. The major pollution of air factors is both indoor and outdoor pollution. That entails the introduction of substances or pollutants into the environment that cause harm or discomfort to live organisms and ecosystems.

Today we take a look at the effects of air pollution which is both present outdoors and indoors. Air pollution causes respiratory and other diseases and is an important source of morbidity and mortality. Air pollution severely affects human health and pollutants of major public health concern include particulate matter, carbon monoxide, ozone, nitrogen dioxide, and sulfur dioxide.

According to WHO, almost all of the global population (99%) breathe air that exceeds WHO guideline limits and contains high levels of pollutants, with low- and middle-income countries suffering from the highest exposures.

Based on the WHO guidelines, the burden of disease attributable to air pollution is now estimated to be on par with other major global health risks such as unhealthy diets and tobacco smoking. Hence in 2015, the creation of World Health Assembly adopted a landmark resolution on air quality and health, recognizing air pollution as a risk factor for noncommunicable diseases such as ischaemic heart disease, stroke, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, asthma, and cancer, and the economic toll they take.

Air plays a core role in maintaining the earth’s climate and ecosystems thus the urgency in a call for policies that aim at containing the sources of greenhouse gas emissions. This a move that if implemented fully will assist lower the burden of disease attributable to air pollution, as well as contribute to the near- and long-term mitigation of climate change.

WHO reveals that air pollution in general is associated with 7 million premature deaths. How? Ambient (outdoor) air pollution in both cities and rural areas is causing fine particulate matter which results in strokes, heart diseases, lung cancer, and acute and chronic respiratory diseases.

Additionally, around 2.4 billion people are exposed to dangerous levels of household air pollution, while using polluting open fires or simple stoves for cooking fuelled by kerosene, biomass (wood, animal dung, and crop waste), and coal.

Thereby the creation of more awareness on the risk of air pollution, as well as available solutions that can be implemented to mitigate the risks of exposure to air pollution will be of help. For it’s only together in harmony that the situation growing dire on a daily can be salvaged or even reversed.

Air Pollution Induced Illnesses.

Air pollution can cause a range of illnesses, both acute and chronic, affecting various parts of the body. Some of the most common air pollution illnesses include:

Respiratory illnesses are often attributed to air pollution and can cause respiratory problems such as asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), bronchitis, and pneumonia. These conditions are caused by the inhalation of fine particulate matter, which can damage lung tissue and exacerbate existing conditions.

Cardiovascular disease is a risk of exposure to air pollution that can increase the risk of heart disease, stroke, and other cardiovascular diseases. This is due to the inflammation and oxidative stress caused by air pollution, which can lead to the development of atherosclerosis and other vascular diseases.

Neurological disorders have been proven by studies that have suggested that exposure to air pollution can lead to neurological disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, and cognitive decline. This is believed to be due to the neuroinflammatory effects of air pollution.

Reproductive problems are also associated with exposure to air pollution has been linked to reduced fertility, low birth weight, and premature birth. It may also increase the risk of birth defects and developmental disorders in children.

Cancer a prisoner of so many is due to long-term exposure to certain air pollutants, such as benzene and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), which has been linked to an increased risk of cancer, particularly lung cancer.

Overall, air pollution can have a significant impact on human health, and reducing air pollution levels is important for protecting public health.

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