Bhubaneswar, Jun 6: Seven million people died every year across the globe due to air pollution, eminent environmental scientist Uma Charan Mohanty said.
In a programme organsied to observe the world environment day at the SOA deemed to be university here yesterday, he said a whopping 92 per cent of the world’s population did not breath clean air because of pollution which had been identified as the cause for the deaths.
"Air pollution is reducing our lifespan by 2 to 3 years. Nearly 1.2 million people die in India every year due to air pollution which has been identified as the third biggest cause of death in the country," he added.
The air quality in as many as 102 cities in the country was extremely poor.
Vehicular traffic and industry contributed to 40 per cent and 25 per cent of air pollution, respectively while it was also responsible for climate change and extreme weather events, he said.
The programme was jointly organised by the Centre for Environment and Climate (CEC) and Bhubaneswar chapter of the Indian Meteorological Society (IMS).
‘Air Pollution’ happens to be the theme for this year’s World Environment Day.
The major anthropogenic reasons for air pollution attributed to rise in vehicular emission, energy generation and industrial growth.
Prof. Mohanty said air pollution was also adversely contributing to climate change and triggering extreme weather events like cyclones of extreme intensity and heat waves while rainfall was getting erratic.
“Adaptation to climate change is important and our dependence should shift towards clean energy sources like solar, wind and hydro power,” he said, adding “if we can tap 30 per cent of available solar energy, we will not require any other source.”
Ajit Padhi, Director (Operations), NASSCOM, said Bhutan had embarked on a campaign to make the Himalayan kingdom pollution free.