When it comes to our day-to-day life, many of us tend to forget about the environment and how our actions impact pollution. In truly concerning news, however, the World Health Organization (known as the WHO) just released results from a study about air pollution and we’re all pretty freaked out about it. The WHO estimates that nine out of ten people on a global scale are breathing polluted air. Specifically, 92 percent of people worldwide are breathing in polluted air, and it can have some SERIOUS health consequences.
The WHO estimates that three million people die every single year in connection to breathing in unhealthy air. Often, people die from lung cancer, strokes, and heart attack as a result of polluted air. While sometimes environmental factors impact pollution, such as dust storms, the WHO argues that people have a big role to play as well, especially in terms of inefficient energy use and transportation.
For example, as Ryan Beek explained in Newsy’s video of the research, China is a pretty wealthy country, but their problems with air pollution are no joke. According to Dominique Mosbergen at The Huffington Post, China’s pollution issues stem from burning coal in power plants and factories, as well as their vehicle use. In fact, they have the sixth highest rate of death related to air pollution in the world.
So, what can be done? Basically, we need to focus on having more efficient energy and transportation that contributes less to air pollution. When we talk about efficient energy, it means different things depending on what your energy consumption is like to begin with, but it can be as simple as having well-insulated windows and thus needing to use less air conditioning in the summer, or using a compact fluorescent lamp instead of an incandescent one.
In truth, we should probably spend more time taking care of the environment in general such as recycling, creating less waste, and car-pooling to cut down on vehicle transmissions, given the fact that we only get one planet Earth. On that note, who is up for some bike riding?