Clearing the Air: a Global Health Perspective on Air Pollution

Document Type : Perspective


1 School of Medicine, National University of Ireland Galway, Galway, Ireland

2 School of Medicine, International Medical University, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia



Air pollution is responsible for one in eight deaths globally per year. The severity of air pollution and its effects on global health are frequently discussed in the literature but are poorly reflected in health policy and have not yet resulted in sufficient actionable change. Air pollution mitigation policies should embody the planetary health concept, which highlights the interdependence between the health of humans and the planet. There is an urgent need for the standardisation of air quality measurement and programmes on a global scale. A reduction in fine particulate matter has been shown to contribute to the greatest degree of public health benefits. Current efforts to improve urban air quality include a significant focus on the transition to sustainable energy and transportation through the electrification of transportation. There are two main fronts in the campaign against pollution, one being the reduction of anthropogenic emissions through public and government policy, and the other being the introduction of novel attempts to decrease pollution and other innovative research to develop new approaches that will ultimately improve global health.


  • Receive Date: 17 February 2022
  • Revise Date: 31 March 2022
  • Accept Date: 05 April 2022
  • First Publish Date: 24 April 2022