Air Pollution and Kids
Air pollution is a threat to children and a risk factor for both acute and chronic respiratory disease.Updated: Aug 25, 2003 19:17 IST
Air pollution is a major environment-related health threat to children and a risk factor for both acute and chronic respiratory disease as well as other diseases. Around 2 million children under five die every year from acute respiratory infections. Many are aggravated by environmental hazards.
Indoor air pollution is a major factor associated with acute respiratory infections in both rural and urban areas of developing countries. A pollutant released indoors is often more dangerous to a child’s lungs than a pollutant released outdoors.
One important concern in developing countries is the exposure to combustion products from biomass fuel and coal, plus reduced ventilation in homes and other places.
In the industrialized world, poor indoor environments are characterized by reduced ventilation, high moisture, the presence of biological agents such as moulds, and a range of chemicals in furnishing and construction materials.
Outdoor air pollution, mainly from traffic and industrial processes, remains a serious problem in cities throughout the world, particularly in the ever-expanding megacities of developing countries.
It is estimated that a quarter of the world’s population is exposed to unhealthy concentrations of air pollutants such as particulate matter, sulphur dioxide, and other chemicals.
First Published: Aug 25, 2003 19:17 IST