Environmental issues each year kills 3.5 billion people in Western Pacific: WHO

Raising awareness on the matter ahead of World Health Day, WHO tweeted, "Many deaths due to environmental causes in the Western Pacific can be prevented – if we take actions for a #HealthierTomorrow."  

World: The international health agency – World Health Organization – WHO, via its social media handle, informed that around 3.5 billion individuals in the Western Pacific die every year following environmental issues such as – air pollution, extreme weather events or waterborne diseases. 

Raising awareness on the matter ahead of World Health Day, WHO tweeted, “Many deaths due to environmental causes in the Western Pacific can be prevented – if we take actions for a #HealthierTomorrow.”  

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World Health Day each year falls on April 7, 2022, and this year it is being celebrated under the theme – “our planet, our health.”  

The official website of the international agency states, “Amid the pandemic, a polluted planet, as well as increasing incidence of diseases such as – cancer, asthma and heart disease, on World Health Day, WHO will concentrate global attention on the urgent actions required to keep humans & the planet healthy, and foster a movement to build societies based on well-being.” 

“The climate crisis is single most important health threat being faced by humanity. Every year 3.5 million people in the Western Pacific die as a result of environmental causes, such as – air pollution, extreme weather events or waterborne diseases. Every 14 seconds, an individual dies from air pollution in the Western Pacific, and more than 90% of individuals breathe unhealthy levels of outdoor – air pollution, which are largely the result of the burning of the same fossil fuels that are driving climate change.” 

In view of WHO, to safeguard the lives of individuals from environmental issues, one nation needs a transformational change in almost every sector, like – energy, transport, nature, food systems and finance. 

Meanwhile, Dr Takeshi Kasai (WHO Regional Director for the Western Pacific), speaking on the issue, asserted, “Environmental pollution & climate change are among the greatest threats to health we face: air pollution caused by rapid economic development and urbanization kills 2.2 million people in our region, each year. For small islands countries – SIDS, climate change is not an abstract issue, but it threatens their very existence.” 

 

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Tariq Saeed

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