Over 90% of the world’s population resides in areas where air pollution levels are alarmingly high. Developing countries, especially the regions of Southeast Asia and the Western Pacific, are the most vulnerable and the most affected.
— United Nations (@UN) September 27, 2016
Most of this air pollution is caused by humans and can be prevented to help save our planet’s future. Household waste, fuel burning, inefficient transportation, industrial activities and coal-fired power plants are all man-made contributing factors.
According to a new study by the World Health Organization (WHO), millions of people die annually because of exposure to pollution. “To date, air pollution — both ambient (outdoor) and household (indoor) — is the biggest environmental risk to health, carrying responsibility for about one in every nine deaths annually,” the report states. “Air pollution continues to rise at an alarming rate, and affects economies and people’s quality of life; it is a public health emergency.”
The organization has created an interactive map showing the areas most drastically influenced.