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Greenpeace suggests that over 1.2 lakh people in India have died due to air pollution

Updated on:18 February 2021, 12:01pm IST
Air pollution is becoming a major contributor when it comes to health related issues. Unfortunately, these issues can be deadly in nature.
HT Correspondent
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It’s time to protect yourself from air pollution. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

At least 12000 people have died in Bengaluru as a result of air-pollution and related problems and caused economic damages to the tune of Rs 12,365 crore in 2020, according to the Greenpeace Southeast Asia Analysis of IQAir data.
The report by Greenpeace, a global climate action advisory group, on Thursday titled Greenpeace : Cost to Economy Due to Air Pollution Analysis 2021’ states that nearly 1.2 lakh lives in six Indian cities and cost economic losses of over Rs 2 lakh crore.

“The cost estimator also sustained the estimated air pollution-related economic losses of Rs.1,23,65,15,40,000. The damage is equally worrying in other Indian cities. An estimated 25,000 avoidable deaths in Mumbai in 2020 have been attributed to air pollution. Bengaluru, Chennai, Hyderabad and Delhi estimated an approximate 12000, 11000, 11000, and 54000 avoidable deaths respectively due to polluted air,” Greenpeace said in a statement on Thursday.

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Indian urban centres are increasingly getting congested due to migration for education, employment and better quality of life. But the increasing population has led to rise in pollution levels due to use of private cars, felling trees to widen roads, construction of new housing and public infrastructure to accommodate the migrant workers–both white and blue collar.

Bengaluru has 9.4 million vehicles in an area of just around 820 square kilometers.

Vehicular pollution is the single biggest reason for deteriorating air quality in India’s IT capital, followed by construction and other reasons, according to the government.
While the covid-19 induced lockdown brought some reprieve to the environment, lifting of restrictions has hastened the deteriorating quality of air, water and overall quality of life.

“Despite recording relatively better air quality this year due to strict lockdown, air pollution continues to be a serious public health issue which also drastically impacts our economy. For the governments of the day, it is crucial that investments are made towards green and sustainable solutions. When we choose fossil fuel over clean energy, our health is put at stake. Polluted air increases the likelihood of deaths due to cancer & stroke, spike in asthma attacks and worsens severity of COVID-19 symptoms,” Avinash Chanchal, Climate Campaigner, Greenpeace India said in a statement.

Air pollution claimed 160000 deaths globally

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A cost estimator is an online tool that tracks the real-time health impact and
economic costs of air pollution in major world cities, Greenpeace said.

Delhi
Deaths : 54,000
Losses = Rs 58,895 crore ($8.1 billion )

Mumbai
Deaths: 25,000
Losses : Rs 26,912 ($3.7 billion)

Bengaluru
Deaths 12,000
Losses: Rs 12,365 crore ( $1.7 billion)

Hyderabad
Deaths: 11,000
Losses Rs 11,637 crore ($1.6 billion )

Chennai
Deaths 11,000
Losses : Rs 10,910 crore ($1.5 billion)

Lucknow
Deaths : 6,700
Losses : Rs 80,009 crore ($1.1 billion)

HT Correspondent HT Correspondent

Brought to you by the correspondents, reporters, and desk at Hindustan Times.