Pollution may shorten life in Indian by 9 years, research group say

Pollution may shorten life in Indian by 9 years, research group say
In Delhi, air pollution is especially bad in winters due to stubble burning. Source: Getty Images
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Daily US Times: A report by The Energy Policy Institute at the University of Chicago (EPIC) says air pollution can reduce the life expectancy of Indians by 9 years.

According to the study, 480 million people in north India face the “most extreme levels of air pollution in the world” and, over time, these high levels of air pollution have expanded to cover other parts too.

The research group has suggested that strong clean air policies can add up to five years to people’s lives.

Bad air kills more than a million people in India every year and Indian cities routinely dominate global pollution rankings.

The report by the US research group says that north India breathes “pollution levels that are 10 times worse than those found anywhere else in the world”.

This air pollution has spread over decades beyond the region to central and western Indian states such as Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra where the average person is now losing between two and a half-to-three years of life expectancy as compared to early 2000, the report adds.

New data from the Air Quality Life Index report by EPIC says that residents in Delhi, India’s capital, could see up to 10 years added to their lives if air pollution in the city was reduced to meet the World Health Organisation (WHO) guideline of 10 µg/m³.

India’s average particulate matter concentration was 70.3 µg/m³ in 2019 – the highest in the world.

The report says that Bangladesh, India, Pakistan and Nepal, which together account for nearly a quarter of the global population, consistently figure in the top 5 most polluted countries on earth.

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