"We can't stop breathing, but we can do something about the quality of air that we breathe" – World Environment Day, UNEP.
World Environment Day is the United Nations day for encouraging worldwide awareness and action to protect our environment. Since it began in 1974, the event has grown to become a global platform for public outreach that is widely celebrated in over 100 countries.
The theme for this World Environment Day is Air Pollution. Air pollution is a complex mixture of gases and particles whose sources and composition vary spatially and temporally. 92% of people in the world today, live in places where air quality falls below WHO limits. Fine particle air pollution is the largest environmental risk factor worldwide. Each year an estimated 6.5 million people die prematurely due to poor air quality. Most of these deaths are due to cardiovascular diseases, namely stroke, and ischemic heart diseases. In the low and middle-income countries 4.3 million deaths are attributed to indoor air pollution from cooking. 90 out of 193 countries do not have vehicle emission standards.
India, a fast emerging and a growing country is particularly vulnerable to air pollution. The country has been grappling with some of the World’s worst air quality, as poorly regulated industrial pollution, vehicular emissions, roadside dust and smoke from agricultural burning chokes many of the country’s major cities. Delhi, the Capital city has been ranked among the most polluted cities in the world. Much to the contrary belief and perception, air pollution is not only an issue facing North India during winters, cities in the south are also facing the brunt of it.
- The Silent killers:
Awareness of pollutants is key factor to assessing the air pollution impacts and taking action. The leading culprits are:
- Sniffing out the sources
Major sources include residential, commercial and industrial combustion of coal and other fossil fuels for heating and power generation, agricultural practices, residential burning of biomass (wood, dung and peat) for heating, cooking, roadside dust and construction activities and vehicular emissions among others.
- Tackling air pollution
There is an urgent need for tackling air pollution on a war footing. While Governments are mulling over regulatory mechanisms, policies and so on, it is up to each one of us to do our bit. Remember Air Pollution in also a lifestyle issue. We contribute to it and hence we need to act where possible whether personally or on behalf of our society.
TERI SAS Events
TERI School of Advanced Studies (TERI SAS) in collaboration with UNEP is organizing a one-day WORKSHOP on Tuesday, 4th June 2019 at TERI SAS, Vasant Kunj, New Delhi.
REGISTER FREE to #BeatAirPollution on the World Environment Day 2019!
The programme is aimed at mobilizing teachers, practitioners and youth to take part in the effort to combat air pollution.
At the end of the workshop and the Campaign, an individual will be able to:
- Recognise the importance of clean air quality and its impact especially with respect to health and environment.
- Understand the status and concerns of air quality in Delhi.
- Comprehend the importance Real time data availability and its relevance.
- Find innovative solutions to fight air pollution in the community.
- Integrate air quality issues into school/college curriculum.
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