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Governments, Other Stakeholders Must ‘Act Swiftly’ To Counter Negative Health Impacts Of Pollution

HuffPost: Global Pollution: A Silent Killer
Susan Blumenthal, public health editor of HuffPost, senior fellow in health policy at New America, and clinical professor at Tufts and Georgetown University Schools of Medicine; and Rachel Gardner, former health policy fellow at New America

“Pollution is now the leading killer of people worldwide, linked to an estimated nine million premature deaths in 2015. … Pollution affects the health of people in all nations, but 92 percent of deaths linked to this environmental killer occur in middle- and low-income countries. … Overall, pollution-related deaths and illnesses account for $4.6 trillion in annual losses, representing 6.2 percent of global economic output. … A recent Lancet report underscores that pollution endangers planetary health, destroys ecosystems, and is closely linked to global climate change. … Governments, foundations, international development organizations, businesses, health professionals, communities, and citizens must provide leadership to elevate pollution prevention and mitigation to the forefront of national and global policy agendas. … Failure to act swiftly and decisively to counter the effects of global pollution, a silent killer, will further imperil the health, economies, and future of people in America and around the world” (1/8).

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in Menlo Park, California.