Road transport is one of Europe's main sources of air pollution, especially of pollutants such as nitrogen dioxide and particulate matter, according to the report. Although the air in the U.S. is relatively clean compared to South and East Asian countries, ozone and particulate matter were estimated to contribute 8 to 21 per cent and 3 to 11 per cent of asthma ER visits in the United States, respectively, they said.
A new WHO report on Air Pollution and Child Health examines the heavy toll of both ambient (outside) and household air pollution on the health of the world's children, particularly in low- and middle-income countries. "In extreme cases, we suggest the parents to shift to a different city where the child can breathe cleaner air".
"This is the first global study of the potential impacts of air pollution on serious asthma attacks that cause people to visit emergency rooms in hospitals around the world", said Johan Kuylenstierna, Policy Director or the Stockholm Environment Institute (SEI) based at York. In low- or middle-income countries, almost 98% of children below the age of five are exposed to the extremely harmful particulate matter PM2.5.
The PM2.5 has reached risky levels in New Delhi in the last two weeks. If the family is burning fuels like wood and kerosene for cooking, heating and lighting, they will be exposed to higher levels of pollution than children who spend more time outside the home. Additionally, some pollutants reach peak concentrations lower to the ground, where children are breathing.
The 2018 Air Quality in Europe report of the EEA found that, despite slow improvements, air pollution continues to exceed European Union and World Health Organization limits and guidelines.
The report adds when pregnant women are exposed to polluted air, they are more likely to give birth prematurely and have small, low birth-weight children.
# Due to household air pollution in 2016, about 66,890 deaths of children below five years were reported out of which 36,073 were girls and 30,817 were boys.
The UN health body is calling for an acceleration of the switch to clean cooking and heating fuels, and for the promotion of cleaner transportation, lower emissions, and better waste management, among other measures.
The daily results of the index are used to convey to the public an estimate of air pollution level. Officials on the call with reporters said it was important for countries to push for renewable energy and to reduce the use of coal and gas.
The World Health Organization (WHO) said on Monday that, nearly all of these children are in poor countries in Asia and Africa.