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Patna’s Deteriorating Air Quality Causes National Concern

Being one of the non-attainment cities with respect to ambient air quality, Patnas deteriorating air quality has been a cause of national concern

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health, air pollution, patna, India, national concern
Officials of CEED highlighted the fact that health must be the central point or focus for any kind of action on air pollution. Pixabay

Being one of the non-attainment cities with respect to ambient air quality under the National Clean Air Programme, Patnas deteriorating air quality has been a cause of national concern.

To highlight the serious concern about growing air pollution and its impact on human health in Patna, the Energy Policy Institute at the University of Chicago (EPIC) India, in partnership with the Centre for Environment and Energy Development (CEED) shared the findings from Air Quality Life Index (AQLI) to educate stakeholders and demand urgent steps to control air pollution in the cities.

According to the Energy Policy Institute at the University of Chicago’s Air Quality Life Index, residents of Patna could live about 7.7 years longer if the World Health Organisation’s (WHO) PM 2.5 guidelines are met.

Back in 1998, the gain in life expectancy by meeting the same air quality standards was four years. This, along with other insightful details, was shared at a workshop organised by CEED and EPIC India in Patna on Saturday.

Officials of CEED highlighted the fact that health must be the central point or focus for any kind of action on air pollution.

“The impact of air pollution on human health is devastating and more so the most vulnerable people are at receiving end. The Bihar government must act on an urgent basis to implement the clean air action plan in letter and spirit,” an official said.

Echoing similar sentiments, Michael Greenstone, Milton Friedman Distinguished Service Professor in Economics and director of EPIC added: “Around the world today, people are breathing air that represents a serious risk to their health. But the way this risk is communicated is very often opaque and confusing, translating air pollution concentrations into colours like red, brown, orange and green.

health, air pollution, patna, India, national concern
The health impacts of breathing toxic air are increasingly showing up in our hospitals and clinics. Wikimedia Commons

“What those colours mean for people’s well being has always been unclear. My colleagues and I developed the AQLI, where the ‘L’ stands for ‘life,’ to address these shortcomings. It takes particulate air pollution concentrations and converts them into perhaps the most important metric that exists – life expectancy,” he said.

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Sharing his insights on the impact of air pollution on human health, Dr. Neeraj Agarwal, AIIMS (Patna) said: “The health impacts of breathing toxic air are increasingly showing up in our hospitals and clinics. Increased patient flow of cases of respiratory illness certainly has links to the worsening air quality in our cities.

“Earlier, we got patients who were smokers or passive smokers but nowadays we get patients who haven’t smoked in their entire life and are suffering from life-threatening diseases like lung cancer,” he said. (IANS)

Next Story

Novel Coronavirus: Government Deploys Health Team on Nepal Border

Many Indian students studying in Wuhan, the epicentre of the outbreak have been stuck there

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Coronavirus
The Coronavirus outbreak, which has so far caused 41 deaths in China, and caused the country to quarantine 16 cities, is causing comparisons to the 2003 spread of severe acute respiratory syndrome, or SARS, which decreased the value of the global economy by $40 billion. VOA

In the wake of a confirmed case of novel coronavirus in Nepal, the Union Health Ministry has subsequently strengthened its vigil in the areas bordering Nepal.

The recent deployment of health team has taken place at Panitanki in West Bengal, entry point from Nepal, said the Health Ministry on Monday.

“Update on #ncov2020 – Subsequent to confirmed #coronarvirus case in #Nepal, vigil strengthened at Panitanki (West Bengal) entry point from Nepal,” the ministry tweeted.

Earlier on Sunday the ministry had informed that in response to confirmed case of the new virus in the neighbourhood country Nepal, India stepped up vigil in districts bordering Nepal. The health ministry said that teams of medical experts were also deployed at border outpost with Nepal at Jhulaghat and Jauljibi in Pithoragarh district in Uttarakhand.

Coronavirus
Southeast Asia’s proximity to China and dependence on that nation for a major share of its economy is raising concerns that the coronavirus outbreak  that started there will not only have health impacts but harm the region’s economies. VOA

In continuation of its efforts to stop the virus from entering in India and making the passengers aware, the ministry has also displayed signage advising the passengers for self reporting and other precautions, disseminated through advisories, at the Mumbai airport.

According to the health ministry, a total of 29,707 passengers from 137 flights have been screened. Fortunately, no case of coronavirus has been found till date.

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According to the announcement made by Chinese health authorities on Monday, 2,744 confirmed cases of pneumonia caused by the novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV), including 461 in critical condition and a total of 5,794 suspected cases have also been reported. The killer virus has caused 80 deaths in China, as per Chinese authorities.

Many Indian students studying in Wuhan, the epicentre of the outbreak have been stuck there. The health ministry said it is working closely with the Ministry of External Affairs and is in touch with the students. (IANS)