Air pollution, which is one of the top ten killers in the world and fifth leading cause of death in India, is responsible for about 10,000 to 30,000 deaths annually in Delhi, a report by the Centre for Science and Environment said on Tuesday.
A report titled ‘Body Burden 2015: State of India’s Health’ released here focuses on public health threats and their environment linkages.
It says air pollution results in about 620,000 premature deaths which are caused by stroke, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, ischemic heart disease, lower respiratory infections and trachea, bronchus and lung cancer among others.
“The report shows us that we must focus on prevention and not treatment. We need to improve the environment, reduce the disease burden and save money in private or public healthcare,” said CSE director general Sunita Narain.
Forest degradation has helped pathogens, that were restricted to animals, jump the species barrier and infect humans, the report states. Open defecation and malnutrition rates are linked, it adds.
“Revamping transportation systems and cleaner technologies are needed urgently,” CSE said.
The analysis includes air pollution, pesticides, degradation of forests, water and sanitation, climate change and lifestyle diseases.