WHO Document

About this paper
This paper extends the analyses of the most recent WHO, European Union and Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development research on the cost of ambient and household air pollution to cover all 53 Member States of the WHO European Region. It describes and discusses the topic of air pollution from a Health in All Policies perspective, reflecting the best available evidence from a health, economics and policy angle and identifies future research areas and policy options.

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WHO puts a price tag on air pollution’s health risks

A recent ground-breaking study* from the WHO Regional Office for Europe and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) notes that a staggering US$ 1.6 trillion was the economic cost of the approximate 600,000 premature deaths and diseases caused by air pollution in the WHO European Region in 2010. The amount is nearly equivalent to one tenth of the gross domestic product (GDP) of the entire European Union in 2013.

The study is the first assessment of the economic burden of outdoor and indoor air pollution in the 53 countries of the region. It also notes that more than 90% of the citizens in the region are exposed to annual levels of outdoor fine particulate matter that are above WHO's air quality guidelines. Reducing air pollution has therefore become a top political priority.

Urbanization and air pollution

Air pollution is a typical problem in large cities, and as urban populations grow, more and more people are being exposed to harmful airborne particles and gases. Today, over 50 percent of the world’s population lives in cities, a proportion to increase in coming years.

Vehicle emissions – especially the content of diesel exhaust – are a major source of urban pollution and city dwellers are becoming more aware about the dangers of breathing everything from fine particles (PM2.5 and PM10) to harmful gases like nitrogen dioxide.

With outdoor air being used as supply air for the ventilation systems of commercial, public and residential buildings, effective air filters are needed in air handling units. In areas with severe air pollution, room air purifiers can be used as an extra filtration measure.

City filters and CamCleaners

Studies have repeatedly shown that high indoor air quality (IAQ) in buildings protects occupants from the adverse health effects of air pollutants, improves work productivity and enhances general well-being. To meet these needs, Camfil offers a number of innovative air filtration solutions. These products not only improve IAQ – they also help building owners reduce their energy costs for operating ventilation systems.

Key products include the City range of combined particle and molecular filters, such as City-Flo™ XL, and the CamCleaner range of room air purifiers, of which City M offers both particle removal and molecular filtration tested according to both EN 1822 and ISO 10121 standards.

Highly efficient particle filters for air handling units also include the recently launched Opakfil ES™, which has received Eurovent’s highest rating (A+) for outstandingly low energy consumption.

More information about these products and other filters is available on this website or from your local Camfil company or representative.

* http://www.euro.who.int/__data/assets/pdf_file/0004/276772/Economic-cost-health-impact-air-pollution-en.pdf?ua=1

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