News from ISGlobal
Exposure to environmental pollutants causes at least 21,000 deaths every year in Spain, of which at least 15,000 can be attributed to air pollution. These data come from the latest Global Burden of Disease (GBD) study, in which ISGlobal, an institution supported by the “la Caixa” Foundation, has participated.
ISGlobal researcher David Rojas, who has participated in the study, calls it an “unacceptable” situation. “It must be noted that the study considered only those risk factors for which there is a proven causality, and for whicha data are available in 195 countries analysed, so these are conservative estimates,” he points out. “In any case, the real tragedy is that these deaths should not be occurring in the first place, since we know the causes and they could be avoided with decisive actions to reduce pollution”, he adds.
The only pollutants included in this study were particulate matter, ozone, lead and radon, while noise, nitrous oxides (NOx), UVA rays or pesticides were not considered.
On the basis of these data, it is estimated that environmental factors account for 5% of the disease burden in Spain compared to 6% for the European Union, while the worldwide average environmental burden rises to 13%.
Forouzanfar, Mohammad H et al. Global, regional, and national comparative risk assessment of 79 behavioural, environmental and occupational, and metabolic risks or clusters of risks, 1990–2015: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2015. The Lancet. 2016 Oct 8;388(10053):1659-1724. doi: 10.1016/S0140-6736(16)31679-8.