Impact of Air Pollution on the Economy

The world is suffering from a major threat in the form of air pollution. Numerous scientific studies have mentioned that air pollution is one of the leading causes of premature deaths and diseases worldwide. According to World Health Organization (WHO), 7 million premature deaths are caused worldwide by air pollution annually (1).

Not just adults, children too are prone to various health problems because of air pollution; such as reduced lung growth and function, infections of respiratory tract and aggravated asthma. According to report published in WHO in 2019, more than 90% of the world’s population was lived in an area where PM2.5 concentration was more than the WHO guidelines of 2005. The adverse effects of air pollution have not limited to health aspects but also affect the economic growth and have a key role in any country’s economic policy and management. OECD in 2016, in its report, mentioned that economic growth will be affected by air pollution in the coming decades (2).

There is no denying the fact that air pollution is the cause of reduced productivity, various respiratory diseases, and a decrease in labor supply that in turn affects the economy in the form of expenditure on healthcare and weakens the population’s productivity.

The economic burden of disease outcomes is estimated by the cost-of-illness technique that includes diseases related to air pollution.

This process involves the evaluation of direct and indirect costs of health care and also estimates output loss because of morbidity and premature deaths. Air pollution affects the economy in many direct and indirect ways by increasing mortality rate, reducing population productivity, affecting food products, deteriorating cultural and heritage monuments, and reducing the overall ecosystem function, which in turn requires money to restore and remediate. According to United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE), WHO and Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OCED) evaluated that in 2015, in Europe, USD 1.6 trillion was spent on premature deaths and air pollution-related diseases (5). In 2019, the economic loss due to air pollution attributed to deaths and sickness is almost 1.36% of the GDP of India (Pandey etal., 2021).

The total health care cost in India was about $103.7 billion in 2019, out of which 11.5 % was because of air pollution,

which is roughly estimated at $11.9 billion (Pandey et al., 2021). These data do not involve the shadow economy of the developing countries where the activities by informal sectors are not recorded in the national accounts (Chantret et al., 2020). These negative impacts of air pollution on health and the economy can be minimised with the help of the best available technologies.

In recent years, air purifiers and air quality tracker devices and apps have attracted lots of customers around the world. One such device and app is Aircubic, which is suitable for all kinds of indoor air pollution tracking such as hospitals, homes, hotels, clinics, schools, etc.

  1. The devices have state of the art sensors and are equipped with real-time monitoring 24×7.
  2. This device measures the harmful gases such as CO2, NO2, CO, CH4 and particulate matter in the atmosphere and then processes them via a software algorithm.
  3. The AI system gives recommendations and provides customised consulting solutions based on the harmful gases detected by the device.
  4. The air cubic systems include the IoT device, mobile app, and Dashboard or Panel. The deterioration in air quality significantly burdens the economy.
  5. Technologies like Aircubic help in the mitigation of air pollution and its effects which in turn helps in the reduction of economical loss concerned with air pollution.

As a society, we need to be aware of the harmful effects of global threats like air pollution which has caused more damage to humanity than any other disease.

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    • to-save-millions-of-lives-from-air-pollution. Accessed on 08-02-2022
    • Accessed on 08-02-2022
    • Chantret, F., Chateau, J., Dellink, R., Durand-Lasserve, O., & Lanzi, E. (2020). Canbetter technologies avoid all air pollution damages to the global economy?. Climatic Change, 163(3), 1463-1480.
    • Pandey, A., Brauer, M., Cropper, M. L., Balakrishnan, K., Mathur, P., Dey, S., … & Dandona, L. (2021). Health and economic impact of air pollution in the states of India:the Global Burden of Disease Study 2019. The Lancet Planetary Health, 5(1), e25-e38.
    • . Accessed on 08-02-2022

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