Mar 25, 2019 | Updated: 02:07 PM EDT

In India Pollution Kills Two People A Minute: Delhi & Patna Are The Worst Hit

Feb 20, 2017 09:10 AM EST

Delhi Schools Close Due To Extreme Levels Of AIr Pollution
DELHI, INDIA - NOVEMBER 7: People wear pollution masks amid heavy dust and smog November 7, 2016 in Delhi, India. People in India's capital city are struggling with heavily polluted air after low winds, holiday fireworks residue and crop-burning in neighboring states contribute to the haze, which has reduced visibility to 400 meters. The pollution levels have risen to 15 times more then the safe limit, a news reports said. Thousands of schools have been ordered closed, cricket matches canceled and residents warned to stay inside. The US embassy has said that it is 'very concerned' about the impact of the pollution on Americans living in Delhi and the public at large.

Air pollution has been a universal issue for quite some time and India seems to be one of the worst nations affected by it. As per the recent Lancet Study, at least two people are killed every minute due to the air pollution in India.

According to The Times of India, some of the world's worst affected cities due to air pollution are in India. The study, based on 2010 data, released earlier this week, has revealed that globally, an estimated 2.7-3.4 million preterm births can be associated with exposure to PM 2.5, a fine particulate that affects the human body. With 1.6 million Preterm births, South Asia is the worst hit, says the study.

The study was published in a journal named "The Lancet".  48 scientists and experts from 16 international institutions took part in the review, which warns that even when the concentration of air pollutants meets WHO standards, there is a high risk of health hazards from air pollution. The study called "The Lancet Countdown: Tracking Progress on Health and Climate Change" refers to the recent data from the International Energy Agency (IEA) comprising of PM 2.5 exposure in lower, middle and upper-income countries.

According to the Indian Express, the Lancet study has placed Delhi and Patna as the worst affected cities in the world with high PM 2.5 levels in the air. The study also says that climatic change and air pollution are intricately related and need to be tackled together.

The Lancet study is also of the opinion that 50 percent of the ambient air pollution come from thermal power plants. The Minister of State for Environment, Forest and Climate Change in India, Anil Madhav Dave has revealed in a Parliament session recently that only a sum of $1 million is spent on an annual basis for monitoring air pollution. He also said that there is no credible study available that can reveal the number of people dying or getting lung infections and allied diseases due to air pollution.

As per the Lancet study, the situation in many Indian cities is quite alarming in terms of air pollution. What's worse is that unlike China, India has not been very effective in curbing this life-threatening environmental hazard. 

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