Skip to main content

Cookies and Privacy

We use cookies to improve your experience on our website. To find out more, read our updated Cookie policy, Privacy policy and Terms & Conditions

The Health Benefits of Fighting Climate Change

Governments often see climate change as too costly to address. In fact, it is too costly to ignore, as the World Health Organization has shown by linking the prevention of disastrous climate change to immediate health benefits and savings from the reduction of air pollution.

LIMA – Governments often see climate change as too costly to address. In fact, it is too costly to ignore. That is why the World Health Organization (WHO), for example, has linked the prevention of disastrous climate change to “immediate health benefits and health cost savings” from the reduction of air pollution.

The statistics are grim. Air pollution caused more than seven million premature deaths – one in eight globally – in 2012, compared to nearly six million premature deaths from tobacco.

One of the biggest causes of harm are the fine particles called PM2.5, with a diameter of less than 2.5 micrometers. They wreak havoc by traveling deep into the lungs, contributing to inflammation, cancer, and respiratory infection, or by passing into the bloodstream, where they can trigger changes in blood vessels that cause heart attacks and strokes.

We hope you're enjoying Project Syndicate.

To continue reading, subscribe now.

Subscribe

Get unlimited access to PS premium content, including in-depth commentaries, book reviews, exclusive interviews, On Point, the Big Picture, the PS Archive, and our annual year-ahead magazine.

https://prosyn.org/hOEHpuA;
  1. skidelsky147_Christoph Soederpicture alliance via Getty Images_policechristmasmarketgermany Christoph Soeder/picture alliance via Getty Images

    The Terrorism Paradox

    Robert Skidelsky

    As the number of deaths from terrorism in Western Europe declines, public alarm about terrorist attacks grows. But citizens should stay calm and not give governments the tools they increasingly demand to win the “battle” against terrorism, crime, or any other technically avoidable misfortune that life throws up.

    1