UNICEF Danger in the Air

In their newest report, UNICEF discuss just how air pollution can affect the brain development in young children. The report not only centers around the large impact that outdoor air pollution has on the health of children, but also how indoor air pollution contributes to poor health.

One of the main points that the report touches on in regards to indoor air pollution is the use of cook stoves. Globally, solid fuels, such as wood, charcoal, dung and crop residues, are used in cooking and heating by around 3 billion people, which can cause indoor air pollution to reach extremely high levels, especially if there is a lack of adequate ventilation.

Globally, solid fuels, such as wood, charcoal, dung and crop residues, are used in cooking and heating by around 3 billion people, which can cause indoor air pollution to reach extremely high levels, especially if there is a lack of adequate ventilation.

When reducing the exposure to air pollution it is vital that physical and structural changes to homes and buildings is included. Within such buildings there should be a focus on improving ventilation and air filtration systems, particularly in classrooms, clinics, houses and hospitals.

Within the report UNICEF suggests that many indoor air pollutants should be avoided, this can include reducing children’s exposure to second-hand smoke. Other common sources of indoor contaminants include building and paint products, cleaning supplies and household chemicals. From these, contaminants such asbestos, formaldehyde, lead and radon can possibly enter the air either directly or indirectly. The more that we can understand what chemicals are in the products in and around our homes, and how they can be dangerous, the better we can protect ourselves and our children.

Read the full UNICEF report here

 

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