A recent report from UNICEF shows that no less than two billion children around the world are affected by the severe air pollution. What’s more, a third of them are residents of India and other neighboring countries. The situation is alarming in several countries in South Asia, as officials announce.
Indian kids are the most exposed to the health risks caused by air pollution. Most of them live in the North of the country, where the quality of air seems to be worse than in other regions. Specialists say that the Indian kids are highly exposed to lungs diseases.
Moreover, the city capital, New Delhi, is among the most polluted cities in the world. Air pollution is brought about by the lack of winds in the region. In addition to these, a lot of garbage can be found on the streets. People tend to burn them, but the resulting smoke also contributes to the phenomenon of air pollution.
India celebrated the holiday of Diwali this weekend. There was a festival celebrating the spiritual victory of good over evil, as the Hindu tradition states. However, the celebration included large numbers of fireworks and other similar manifestations, which take their toll on the quality of breathable air. The festival was not celebrated in India alone, but in other countries as well, such as Nepal, Sri Lanka, Malaysia, and Myanmar.
Health authorities in India also issued warnings for the population. Children and senior residents were specially asked not to go out. People who already heave respiratory conditions are also advised not to go out these days on the smoky streets in India.
Doctors explain that children are more vulnerable than adults to air pollution. They breathe in twice as much air in comparison to grownups, which means that they inhale more of the toxic substances. As their immune systems are not fully developed, this is another reason why parents should be extra careful about protecting them against air pollution.
UNICEF officials report that there are regions in the world where the level of air pollution is up to seven times higher than the limits set by specialists. This means that three hundred million children worldwide are exposed to alarmingly high levels of air pollution. Most of them, namely two hundred twenty million, live in countries in the Southern parts of Asia.
Official statistics also show that six hundred thousand kids under the age of five die every year around the world because of respiratory diseases caused by air pollution. The conditions can affect their lungs, and even their brain.
The Indian authorities are aware of the problem and are developing strategies to stop air pollution and its damaging effects.
Image courtesy of: Wikipedia