Air Pollution and Health in Rapidly Developing Countries by Gordon McGranahan, Frank Murray

By Gordon McGranahan, Frank Murray

(Earthscan) Murdoch Univ., Australia. textual content stories fresh advancements within the box and their relevance for public overall healthiness in constructing international locations. offers stories from Asian, African, and Latin American international locations; and contrasts findings with these from Europe and North the United States. Softcover.

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Extra resources for Air Pollution and Health in Rapidly Developing Countries

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Air pollution is not a recent phenomenon. The remains of early humans demonstrate that they suffered the detrimental effects of smoke in their dwellings (Brimblecombe, 1987). Blackening of lung tissues through long exposure to particulate air pollution in smoky dwellings appears to be common in mummified lung tissue from ancient humans. Unhealthy air was a suspected cause of disease long before the relationship could be scientifically confirmed. Indeed, the miasma theory of disease, still widely held well into the 19th century, blamed a wide range of health problems on bodily disturbances resulting from ‘bad’ air.

Air quality standards based on levels required to protect the most vulnerable in the community need to be introduced and enforced. Taken together, these chapters raise very serious concerns about the health hazards of air pollution in low and middle income countries, and indicate that much can be done to reduce these concerns. There is, however, a wide range of actors involved, and coordination is of critical importance. There is little point in collecting information if it will not be used, and it is unfortunate when actions are taken on the basis of insufficient information.

For example, appreciable risks were found in studies relating to particulate concentrations (PM10 – particles with aerodynamic diameters less than 10µm) and mortality in Sao Paulo (Brazil), Santiago (Chile), Mexico City (Mexico) and Bangkok (Thailand). This chapter also reviews the evidence on ozone, nitrogen oxides, carbon monoxide and lead. Clearly, more research is needed in developing countries, but the indications are that the effects of air pollution are at least roughly comparable. WHO air pollution guidelines have long been important tools for countries developing their own air pollution standards, regulations and policies.

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