Health Desk-March 14, 2019: Air pollution could be causing double the number of excess deaths a year in Europe than has been estimated previously, according to a study published in the European Heart Journal on Tuesday.
Using a new method of modelling the effects of various sources of outdoor air pollution on death rates, the researchers found that it caused an estimated 790,000 extra deaths in the whole of Europe in 2015 and 659,000 deaths in the 28 Member States of the European Union (EU-28). Of these deaths, between 40-80% were due to cardiovascular diseases (CVD), such as heart attacks and stroke. Air pollution caused twice as many deaths from CVD as from respiratory diseases.
The researchers found that air pollution caused an estimated 8.8 million extra deaths globally rather than the previously estimated 4.5 million.
Worldwide, they found that air pollution is responsible for 120 extra deaths per year per 100,000 of the population. In Europe and the EU-28, it was even higher, causing 133 and 129 extra deaths a year per 100,000 people, respectively.