Around 12.4 lakh deaths in India in 2017, one in eight deaths last year have been attributed to air pollution, which is more than the number of deaths due to tobacco consumption. With PM2.5, Delhi, followed by UP and Haryana have highest exposure to air pollution. It is also observed that the average life expectancy would have been 1.7 years higher, if not for pollution and its health effects.
The study published in the Lancet Planetary Health Journal gave out disturbing facts, asserting India’s contribution of 18% to the global pollution and that 77% of India’s population is exposed to outdoor pollution levels which are above the normal standards laid down. The Northern states particularly had high outdoor pollution when compared to the southern states.
The impact of air pollution in households has caused around 4.8 lakh deaths last year due to the use of 56% of solid fuels in households, which seem to have reduced considerably. The major contributors to increase in air pollution are road dust, waste burning, burning of agriculture stubble, diesel generators, construction activity etc.