Particulate pollution remained high even while COVID-19 slowed the global economy.
The world’s economy slowed during the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic. Yet, the global annual average particulate pollution (PM2.5) was largely unchanged from 2019 levels.
At the same time, growing evidence shows air pollution even when experienced at very low levels hurts human health. This recently led and involved the World Health Organization to revise its guideline (from 10 µg/m³ to 5 µg/m³) for what it considers a safe level of exposure to particulate pollution, bringing most of the world. This brings it into the unsafe zone
The AQLI finds that particulate air pollution takes 2.2 years off global average life expectancy, or a combined 17 billion life years. This is just like the impact on health when smoking or alcohol usage.
Let’s hope that we stop air pollution to make the earth a better place to live and also to increase the Global Life Expectancy!
Author: Sri Nihal Tammana
PC: Energy Policy Institute at the University of Chicago