Air pollution lessens average Pakistani’s life expectancy by 7 years

Amraiz Khan

The air pollution has lessened the average Paki-stani’s life expectancy by 7 years while in certain areas this ratio is 3.9 years.

This was revealed by a US-based Energy Policy Institute at the University of Chicago (EPIC) in its annual report regarding Air Quality Life Index (AQLI).

The report was produced by EPIC on September 01 in which AQLI indicated that owing to particulate pollution human health is facing the greatest threat globally.

But South Asia is consis-tently the most polluted region, with the people there seeing their lives shortened by an average of five years relative to what it would be if the region met the WHO guideline—and even more in the most polluted parts of the region like northern India.

The presence of Particulate pollution in the air is widely believed to be the most deadly form. Its microscopic particles penetrate deep into the lungs and filter into the bloodstream. It is primarily caused by the burning of fossil fuels.

According to some estimates, fossil fuels account for 60 percent of urban ambient PM2.5 in 2014, with the remaining sources being attributed to natural sources and other human activities.

At the same time, fossil fuel combustion is also the primary cause of climate change, which is already causing temperatures to rise, winter snowpacks to melt earlier, droughts to become more severe, and wildfire seasons to become longer.

“The impact of particulate pollution on life expectancy is comparable to that of smoking, twice that of alcohol and drug use, three times that of unsafe water, five times that of HIV/AIDS, and 29 times that of conflict and terrorism.”

Air pollution has not only posed serious threats to human health but it has also adversely impacted on the national economy of Pakistan.

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