Air pollution ‘silent killer’ in African cities: study


Pollution in Africa’s fast-expanding cities is deadlier than thought, but inexperienced options may save tens of 1000’s of lives and avert billions of {dollars} in injury, a report mentioned Oct 27.

“Air pollution (in African cities) is excessive and rising, it is rising fairly rapidly,” mentioned Desmond Appiah, Ghana director on the Clean Air Fund, a British NGO which revealed the study. “It is a silent killer.”

Urban pollution has been broadly ignored in Africa, the study says.

Africa’s inhabitants is generally rural and solely just lately adopted different continents in making the exodus to town.

Previous analysis revealed in the journal The Lancet Planetary Health estimated that poisonous air – particularly particulates and gases from business and transport, but in addition from wood-burning stoves – led to 1.1 million untimely deaths in 2019.

By comparability, HIV-AIDS associated sicknesses claimed 650,000 deaths globally the identical 12 months, in keeping with UN figures.

The report checked out 4 fast-growing cities on the continent – Accra, Cairo, Johannesburg and Lagos – to issue in well being, environmental and financial prices.

It in contrast outcomes between a “business-as-usual” trajectory to 2040 with a inexperienced situation in which the cities undertake clear air measures, reminiscent of upgrading public transport, introducing cleaner cooking stoves and industrial expertise.

Taking the greener path may save 125,000 lives and US$20bil (RM94.5bil) in financial prices, and minimize these cities’ emissions by round 20% by 2040, the report mentioned.

On the “business-as-usual” trajectory, the monetary invoice will soar greater than six-fold.

“Africa’s financial progress might be pushed by fast-expanding cities,” Clean Air Fund mentioned.

“Over 65% of the continent’s inhabitants is predicted to stay in city areas by 2060. By the top of the century, Africa will host 5 of the ten largest megacities in the world. The large query now could be how briskly, truthful and sustainable this progress might be.”

Separately, a Boston-based analysis group, the Health Effects Institute (HEI), mentioned the illness burden of air pollution in Africa was among the many highest in the world.

In sub-Saharan Africa, the speed of deaths linked to air pollution is 155 deaths for each 100,000 individuals – virtually twice the worldwide common of 85.6 deaths in 100,000 individuals, the HEI mentioned in a report. – AFP Relaxnews

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