The Russian Ecological Society fights for Clean Air: how air pollution as an environmental health hazard contributes to the spread of COVID

The Russian Ecological Society fights for Clean Air: how air pollution as an environmental health hazard contributes to the spread of COVID

The Russian Ecological Society (RES) is studying the problematics of Air Quality, world`s experience and best measures applied to diminish environmental pollution. The Russian ecological society cooperates with the international community to exchange expertise and improve environmental management.

There are already over a million deaths because of coronavirus. We may notice some disparity in terms of air conditions that triggered the distinct variety of consequences: for some countries, the COVID epidemic resulted in thousands of deaths, while for others it was a single death.

The problem we all face

Assuredly, some additional factors contribute to such disparity; accessibility and quality of medical services, pre-existing medical conditions, travel connections, local climate effects, population density, and affordability of prompt testing. 

Several recent studies performed to find the leading reason for COVID complications.

A study from Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health has shown the correlation between the probability of COVID complications and the level of air pollution. 

Zhu et al. have also shown this correlation. They investigated associations of six pollutants; eventually they have confirmed the pronounced association between PM2.5, PM10, NO2, and O3 and the newly confirmed cases. 

Tian et al. confirmed that there is a 22% increase in cases in the places polluted by over 10 mg/m3 nitrogen dioxide.

Liang et al. found that long-term exposure to tailpipe emissions, especially of NO2 in places, elevated death rates by 7%.

The United Kingdom’s Office for National Statistics confirmed the elevated mortality from COVID due to air pollution.

Air pollution has many agents. They can be natural, like forest fires and sandstorms. The industrial ones, like the burning of solid fuels, and fine particulate matter composed of nitrates, sulfates, ammonium, and carbon are the main reason for a polluted environment.

Air pollution heightens the risks of asthma and chronic bronchitis, provokes cardiovascular disease, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

The reports of the Center of Cell Biology in Shandong found that long-term exposure to air pollution attacks the immune system and damages the cilia of the lungs that move microbes and debris up. 

The ruined immune system, the popped up health crisis are clear evidence for human and planetary interdependence.

Russia on the way towards Clean Air: Synergy of environmental projects

In Russia, the air pollution problem is particularly acute in 2020, according to the source, in the beginning of this year the pollution level of particular substances in some regions is significantly above the average levels.

We should make the most of what we have to mitigate air pollution worldwide. It is our environmental duty.

For this reason, the Russian Ecological Society (RES) continues to work with cities` administrations and public authorities to prepare several regions to join the BreatheLife campaign led by the World Health Organization (WHO), United Nations Environment, and the Climate & Clean Air Coalition (CCAC).

BreatheLife campaign aims at the mobilization of cities and individuals to protect our health and planet from the effects of air pollution.

The Russian Ecological Society already contributes to the Clean Air goals. RES plays a significant part in the federal Clean Air project within the framework of the national project Ecology.

The Russian Ecological Society would like to improve the quality of life in Russia and contribute to global public work, strengthen the exchange of experience, and synchronize the international and national projects. The Russian ecological society wants to put its labor and energy into the importance and the value that cannot be debased — the future of the Earth.

The Russian Ecological Society has long been working on the realization of the federal project “Clean Air” on the territory of the Russian Federation. By participating in the international campaign, we may improve the performance of applied strategies in the federal project.

The Russian Ecological Society has vast territories to work with an immense room to unleash our creativity and knowledge. 

Through synergistic cooperation of public authorities, governmental and non-governmental organizations, and scientific experts, RES would achieve a well-managed system of strategies to address urgent and long-term environmental issues.

Article is prepared by the Department of International Cooperation of the Russian Ecological Society

[email protected]

Dmitry Savelev, Polina Vinogradova

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