In spite of improved quality of air since 1990s, pollution is still causing heart attacks, lung disease and strokes killing more than 30,000 Americans each year, as per the new study.
Researchers observed concentrations of tint pollution particles termed as PM2.5 all over the country in the period of 1999–2015. These fine particles are nearly 30 times lesser the size of the human hair’s width. They are caused by car combustion, power plants fired by coal as well as various industrial sources.
On inhalation of these particles, they get lodged in the tiny blood vessels of lungs, thereby causing lung diseases over time. Further, such particles get in the bloodstream, raising risk of stroke and heart attack, noted the researchers.
According to Majid Ezzati, who is the lead researcher of the study, increased stringency regarding regulations about air pollution in U.S. may be successful in saving a lot of lives every year, while improving the longevity of life all over the country. Ezzati is also the chair of environment related health in the Public Health School at London’s Imperial College.
Levels of PM2.5 have decreased overall from back in 1999. However, levels in a lot of areas still remain high, as per the findings of the researchers. Researchers extrapolated on the data for 2015 and discovered that air-related pollution was responsible for approximately 16,000 deaths of females and 15,000 deaths of males in the U.S.
These fatalities were owing to respiratory diseases like asthma as well as heart attacks. Further, they contributed to lower expectancy of life among both males and females. Lowering of life expectancy owing to high levels of air pollution was noted in LA, Oklahoma, Alabama as well as Arkansas. Low life expectancy levels were noted most in places inhabited by poor people. They were found to be lowest in areas where wealthy people reside.