Smog May Be a Cause of Maximum Deaths in the Future

Smog May Be a Cause of Maximum Deaths in the Future

A new research shows that smog may become a cause of illness and death around the world which is a result of global warming.

Scientists predict that over half of the population of the Earth could be affected by a rise in the frequency and duration of polluted air.

Studies conducted by US researchers suggest that 55 per cent of people will be affected by atmospheric stagnation events, which are predicted to increase by over 40 days a year in a few parts of the world.

Stagnation happens when an air mass hangs over an area for a greater period and it poses a serious pollution threat which leads to soaring rates of diseases of the heart and lungs.

According to the World Health Organisation, poor quality of air is the cause of approximately seven million premature deaths around the world every year.

US scientist Dr Daniel Horton, from Stanford University and his colleagues wrote in the journal Nature Climate Change: "The potential public health impact increases as the duration of stagnation lengthens.

"Multi-day stagnation episodes can lead to prolonged hazardous air exposure associated with extreme air pollution, severe outbreaks of acute cardiovascular and respiratory illness and increased incidence of mortality."

India, Mexico and the western US are said to be at most risk from health impacts due to smogs which will affect areas of high population.

Los Angeles which lies on the west coast of the US is already quite famous for its choking smogs.

The prediction is based on studies which used climate models and assume that the emissions of greenhouse gases will remain high.

Warmer temperatures have been forecast which will increase the incidence of smogs, which are brought about by changes in the water cycle and the air circulation. Dr Sean Semple, an air pollution expert at Aberdeen University, said: "If climate change causes an increase in the frequency and length of smog or pollution events then it is likely the health burden from poor air quality will increase.


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