WHO: 80% of Urban Residents Breathe Unsafe Air
From VOA Learning English, this is the Health and Lifestyle report.
A new study finds that more than 80 percent of people living in cities are breathing unsafe air.
The World Health Organization study on urban air quality says those most affected live in the world's poorest cities. The study finds urban air pollution has nearly doubled in 3,000 cities over the past two years. The cities are in 103 countries.
The study also shows that almost all cities with populations over 100,000, and in developing countries, have air pollution levels that do not meet WHO guidelines.
The WHO warns that as air quality worsens the risk increases for many diseases. These include stroke, heart disease, lung cancer, and breathing diseases such as asthma. Poor air quality is also responsible for an estimated seven million premature deaths every year.
Flavia Bustreo is WHO Assistant-Director General of Family, Women and Children's Health. In the report, she says that dirty air in cities most affects the youngest, oldest, and poorest people.
However, her colleague, Maria Neira, says there are effective measures to deal with the problem. Neira leads the WHO's Public Health and Environmental Policy.
"You will see that in those cities where measures have been put in place, you can see a decrease on the levels of air pollution and, therefore, on the health risks caused by air pollution."
Neira agrees in the report that "urban air pollution continues to rise at an alarming rate" and severely affects human health. But she says the study shows improvements too. In her words, "awareness is rising and more cities are monitoring their air quality."
This includes increased monitoring of particulate matter in the air.
"Particulate matter," also known as particle pollution, is a complex mixture of extremely small particles and liquid droplets. Particulate matter is made up of a number of parts, including acids, organic chemicals, metals, and soil or dust. The WHO study finds a reduction in air pollutants could lessen deaths from particulate matter by 15 percent.
Carlos Dora is Coordinator of WHO's Department of Public Health and Environmental Policy. He says there are low-cost ways to improve air quality for even the poorest cities. These methods include using renewable power sources, such as solar and wind, and sustainable public transportation.
"If you have clean transportation means, like cycling, walking or rapid transit systems -- where you have a lot of people being carried with a few vehicles -- then you have less air pollution. Or, if you have cities like New York, which have cleaned the fuel to heat and cool the buildings in a major way ... then you have important improvements in air pollution."
The report says the areas with the poorest air quality are in the Eastern Mediterranean and South East Asia.
I'm Anna Matteo.
1.air quality 空气质量
These effects appeared to be reversible when air quality improved.
2.air pollution 空气污染
Power plants that burn coal add greatly to air pollution.
3.heart disease 心脏病
According to the latest surveys many Britons suffer from heart disease.
据最近调查显示, 许多英国人患心脏病 。
4.lung cancer 肺癌
Does smoking contribute to lung cancer?
1.However, her colleague, Maria Neira, says there are effective measures to deal with the problem.
deal with 处理；应付
I have no way yet as to deal with such a complicated situation.
I have a huge pile of letters to deal with.
2."You will see that in those cities where measures have been put in place, you can see a decrease on the levels of air pollution and, therefore, on the health risks caused by air pollution."
put in place 到位；正在实施
All the money needed has been put in place.
Before you leave the office, everything should be put in place.
在离开办公室之前, 应把所有物品摆放好 。
世卫组织在城市空气质量研究报告中指出，全球最贫穷城市的居民受此影响最为严重 。研究发现，过去两年间有3000座城市的空气污染指数几乎翻了一倍 。这些城市分布在103个国家 。
世界卫生组织称，空气质量恶化导致居民患多种疾病的风险增大 。包括中风、心脏疾病、肺癌以及哮喘等呼吸道疾病 。每年因空气污染早逝的人口高达700万 。
Flavia Bustreo是世界卫生组织负责家庭、妇女和儿童卫生事物的助理总干事 。她在报告中指出，受污染空气影响最大的是小孩、老人和穷人 。
她的同事玛丽亚·内拉（Maria Neira）称，一些措施可以有效地解决这类问题 。内拉负责世界卫生组织公共卫生和环境政策司 。
内拉表示，“那些已经采取相关措施的城市，其空气污染水平有所下降 。那么，因空气污染导致的健康风险也有所降低 。”
内拉认可报告中提及的“城市空气污染仍以惊人的速度上升”并且严重影响人类健康的观点 。但她表示，研究也表明了这一情况有所改善 。套用一句她的话，“人们的防范意识正在提高，越来越多的城市开始监视空气质量 。”
颗粒物也称颗粒物污染，是一种微小的固体和液体混合物 。颗粒物由若干部分组成，包括酸性物质、有机化学品、金属、土壤和灰尘 。世界卫生组织研究发现，空气污染物减少可以使因颗粒物污染造成的死亡率降低15% 。
卡洛斯·多拉（Carlos Dora）是世界卫生组织公共卫生和环境政策司的协调员 。她说，目前有些低成本的方法能够改善空气质量，就算是贫穷的城市也能采用 。可以使用可再生能源，例如太阳能和风能以及建立可持续发展的公共交通模式 。
多拉表示，“如果城市拥有清洁的交通设施，例如自行车、步行或快速公交系统，人人都乘坐公交车，那么空气污染就会减少 。或者像纽约一样，利用净化燃料为房屋供暖或制冷，空气污染也能得到很大改善 。”